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Military Requirements

Military requirements for entrance

Joining The Military: Military Requirements

There are physical, mental, and educational military requirements for entrance.  Each branch has their own set of specific requirements they ask for from their applicants. Whether you get in or not comes down to many factors such as these:

  • Age
  • Height
  • Weight
  • Tattoos
  • Citizenship
  • Past drug use
  • Medical history
  • Criminal history
  • School GPA history
  • Debt payment history
  • Number of dependents
  • Your ASVAB scores
  • Military enlisting quotas
  • The “whole person” concept

The Age & Education To Enlist In The Military

To military requirements for age are 18 years old or 17 with your parents permission. You also need to have a high school diploma. Each branch has a select number of personnel they will allow with a GED, but you will need to prove to them that you will follow through with your commitments. Items such as a stellar job history, no criminal acts and other factors will be taken into consideration to see if you’re the kind of person the military wants. Also, if you’re joining with a GED most branches now want you to at least have 15 college credits. Continuing your education is BIG in the military these days.

Type Air Force US Army Coast Guard Marine Corps US Navy
Active Duty 17-27 17-35 17-27 17-29 17-34
Reserve 17-39 17-40 17-39 17-28 18-39
Guard 17-40 17-42 N/A N/A N/A

Joining The Military With A Felony

Having a criminal history can also disqualify you. You will need to explain your thought process behind the crimes and show that you are no longer a rule breaker. The military doesn’t like to see its Marines, Sailors, Soldiers and Airman in the local newspapers for DUI’s, drug use and other offenses.

Here is a list from the Coast Guard that shows you what types of crimes they really look down on and ones that will get you a quick NO from the recruiter. All the branches have a similar chart… but just like the medical regulations I talked about above, these rules can change… so still visit a recruiter if you’re really wanting in. This form just gives you an idea of what the recruiter has to work with…    Table Of Offenses

Can Non-US-Citizens join the US Military?

Enlistment into any branch of the U.S. military, by citizens of countries other than the United States is limited to those foreign nationals who are legally residing in the United States and possess a Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services Alien Registration Card (INS Form I-151/551 – commonly known as a “Green Card”).

Applicants must be between 17 and 35; meet the mental, moral, and physical standards for enlistment; and must speak, read and write English fluently.

The US military branches cannot assist foreign nationals in obtaining admittance into the United States. Questions concerning immigration to the United States should be asked of the U.S. Embassy. Only after immigration procedures are completed and an applicant is legally residing in the United States may an application for enlistment be accepted.

The U.S. Government agency, which is responsible for immigration and naturalization, is the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services within the Department of Homeland Security.

Much More To It…

There is a lot more that goes into seeing if someone is eligible to enlist. Keep in mind that recruiters use the “Whole Person Concept”. So if you walk in with your pants half off your butt, sit in the chair slouching and don’t take off your sunglasses… the recruiter is going to tell you that the military isn’t for you even if you do qualify.

Go in thinking that you are turning in a job application, because you basically are. Show them that you want this, will fight for it and will be the kind of person the recruiter would go to war with

I have put a link to each of the military branches Recruiters handbook on the side of this page. This will give you an idea of the screening process and show you the types of positive traits and red flags they will be looking for in you

It is not cheating looking at these books… think of it as… Recon

Do you have College Credits?

Having some college credit is very important to having a successful career in the Military. Do not think that joining the military is an excuse to stop your education after High School. If you do not have a High School Diploma and only have a GED you are going to need at least 15 college credits to be able to join the Military.

Having college credits will increase your rank before your join!

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Even if you are in a hurry to start your career in the Military and do not want to wait to take some classes, there is still another option. You can sign up for classes and the branch you want to join at the same time. The Delayed Entry Program allows you to join and delay your Basic Training date while you are preparing. You can even take online classes that you can complete at your own pace or in as little as six weeks. There are too many options for you not to check it out!