Enlisting in the U.S. Military is another great option for students after high school graduation. Service in the armed forces can lead to a job or college-level education.
Joining the military doesn’t mean you can only be a soldier; each branch has many training programs. There are opportunities to become a doctor, engineer, pilot, computer specialist, communications professional and more!
Take some time to review each of the military branches:
- United States Air Force
- United States Army
- United States Coast Guard
- United States Marines Corps
- United States Navy
Students should understand the requirements for each branch then speak with their College & Career Counselor, School Counselor, and a local recruiter to review the expectations. Your College & Career Counselor can connect you to your local recruiters.
Things to consider when researching military branches are...
- What does a typical contract look like? (Number of years, job training, basic training, etc)
- Does that particular military branch offer the career or job you are interested in?
- Are you qualified for this job based on your ASVAB score?
- What benefits exist for those enlisted in that particular military branch?
- How is service in that particular branch different than experiences in other branches?
You can visit the official page of the United States Government to read more about the basic requirements and process for joining the military.
Military Entrance Exam: ASVAB
The Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) is a test most commonly associated with military enlistment. Our district's comprehensive high schools offer ASVAB 1-2 times per year during the school day.
If you take the ASVAB more than once, only your most recent score will count. (Even if you score lower than you did the previous time.) Scores are only good for 2 years.
- Read more about the ASVAB
- Free ASVAB Prep Resource
- Free ASVAB Study Guide
- ASVAB Fact Sheet
- ASVAB Career Exploration Program Overview (CEP)
- ASVAB Career Exploration Program - Post-Test Information
US Military Academies
Students interested in serving their country and getting a college degree, should also consider a US Military Academy. Military academies prepare students to become officers, while providing them with a free undergraduate degree—in exchange for military service. There are 5 official officer training academies operated by the US Armed Forces:
- U.S. Military Academy
- U.S. Naval Academy
- U.S. Air Force Academy
- U.S. Merchant Marine Academy
- U.S. Coast Guard Academy
The admissions process to these academies is extensive and very competitive. After graduation, cadets become second lieutenants or ensigns and must serve a minimum term of duty, usually five years plus another three years in the Reserves. If the student's chosen occupation requires particularly extensive training, the tour of duty may be longer.
Junior Reserves Officers' Training Corps (JROTC)
The JROTC is the largest youth training and development program in the United States, with more than 500,000 participating students. All military branches maintain JROTC programs, which are operated through cooperative agreements between the services and high schools. JROTC is a great option for students interested in joining the military.
Access more information about the JROTC at your school!
Senior Planning Checklist
Seniors - you can use this checklist to help you track your progress toward enlistment!