Soldiers have numerous reasons to join the Army. Whether they join to travel the world, or to help pay for college, or simply because they want to serve their country, today’s soldiers come from all types of backgrounds. However, they all have something in common — the benefits of joining the Army. Here are just a few of these benefits.
One Of The Top Reasons To Join The Army: Educational Benefits
Paying for college is a big concern for most high school graduates. College costs are rising faster than ever before and because many students do work full or part time while attending school, it can take longer than the typical four year education. If you want to attend college, but the thought of tens or even hundreds of dollars in student loans isn’t appealing, consider making college one of the reasons to join the Army.
The Army has a tuition assistance program for active duty and reserve soldiers that will cover tuition, laboratory, enrollment and any other fees. Guard soldiers who are activated are also eligible for tuition assistance. However, soldiers who aren’t able to attend college while working can take advantage of the GI Bill once they’ve finished their service commitment. There are a number of different programs, but the Post 9/11 GI Bill provides soldiers with full tuition, a book stipend each semester and a monthly housing allowance for each month that they’re enrolled in school.
Another One Of The Benefits Of Joining The Army: Full Pay And Benefits
Although Army pay doesn’t have a reputation of providing soldiers with the ability to buy large houses and fancy cars, Army pay is often better than soldiers expect.
- A guaranteed monthly pay rate. This rate typically goes up each January, but this is a small, cost of living increase. Larger increases happen with improved rank and after each two years of service. For instance, an E-2 who’s been enlisted for two years will make less than an E-2 who’s been serving for four years.
- A monthly housing stipend, if they live off post. This allowance, called BAH, is calculated on individual housing markets, whether the soldier is married or single and rank. BAH is not taxable income.
- A monthly allowance for food. Called BAS, this untaxed allowance provides income that’s meant to help cover food costs. The 2012 rate is $348.44 a month for enlisted members and $239.96 for officers.
- Free health care for soldiers and family members. Soldiers receive medical care free of charge through military treatment facilities. Family members can either use MTFs or pay a small yearly deductible to use off-base providers.
Another Of The Top Reasons To Join The Army: Gain Valuable Work Experience
Whether you’ve decided that you want to be a career soldier or you want to complete one term and move on, employers love hiring veterans. When you have Army experience on your resume with an honorable discharge, employers know that you’ll have the work ethic and job experience that they need.
These are only a few of the benefits of joining the Army — other benefits include access to government programs like the VA home loan program, transition assistance when an enlistment ends, legal help and other benefits. If you’re interested in learning more about the reasons to join the Army, or you have questions about any of the benefits of joining the Army, consider contacting an Army recruiter.