A nationwide problem that applies to Nebraska too: Nebraska Army National Guard declining trend of applicants continues

LINCOLN, Nebraska – The Nebraska Army National Guard welcomed 14 new members only last week. It comes as the number of applications in Nebraska and the rest of the country continues to decline.

In 2020, there were 393 new enlistments; thus far in 2019, there have been only 210, or roughly half of their annual objective. They offer a variety of incentives, such as tuition help, to recruit new employees.

Maj. Sean O’Neill of the Nebraska Army National Guard’s recruiting and retention unit stated, “At this time, we’ve achieved approximately 51 percent of our annual recruitment goals.” The target retention rate is 75%, and we are now at approximately 65%. We provide 100 percent state tuition support, so these troops practice on the weekends and attend classes during the school year.

The Nebraska National Guard now consists of 3,500 troops and 1,000 airmen. Typically, 10 percent of that number must be recruited to replace those who have retired or left the service.

Work in the National Guard differs from that of other military forces. The commitment for soldiers is once a month, and their tasks remain within the country’s borders. This allows individuals like PFC Jacob Riggs-Ramage to serve while continuing their schooling.

Riggs-Ramage stated, “The commitment is a fantastic balance; I am able to assist my community while also preparing myself for success on the civilian side.” “I truly wanted to fulfill my sense of responsibility; I needed something besides school and employment that I could dedicate myself to, and the Nebraska National Guard was without a doubt the solution.”

One of the numerous ways in which the Nebraska National Guard assists its soldiers is by assisting with college tuition costs. Among other things, they arrange interviews with professional partners and provide aid with trade school.

If the Nebraska National Guard sounds like your calling, you may find more information on their website.

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