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  • Going from active to national guard

    I am currently on active duty and will be getting out 16Aug2012, after discovering i was option 35 and cannot get IRR i had to pick a guard/reserve unit. It seems that i will be going to NJ national guard 3rd battalion 112th field artillery as a 68W (medic) I have 2 years of stabilization so i cannot be deployed and i have a service obligation until 26Feb2017. I have been deployed so the 2 years of stabilization is good but after that is what I am most curious about, I really know nothing about the guard but i always thought they all deployed together. I am hearing things about 150 or whatever the number is of soldiers from different national guard units getting sent to active duty units and deployed? How does this all work, it all seems foreign to me. I also saw somewhere that NJ national guard is in the JRTC rotation for january 2013 which would mean there should be an up coming deployment. any info on that?

    Also anything else you can tell me about national guard monthly life would be good, I am currently a line medic in an infantry battalion and quite fed up with the amount of BS that goes along with it, i imagine nowhere else can be as bad as this place so i am pretty optimistic about the guard. What do we do on drill weekends? and for the 2 weeks of training in the summer? from what I understand drill weekends are pretty sham and not much at all goes on.

    Thanks in advance and if there is any other helpful information you are able to give that would be greatly appreciated.

  • #2
    Re: Going from active to national guard

    How busy drill weekends are all depends on the individual unit. If you end up in a line unit like infantry, artillery or combat engineer you can expect 7 days worth of training cramed into 2-3 drill days. There can be times where leadeship is busy with admin work or meetings and the lower enlisted and junior leaders are trying to stay busy with hip pocket training or the never ending beautification of the armory or weapons. Sometimes things get done quickly and then shamming commences. Typical Army in that sense.

    In my company we are always busy during drill, there is rarely a dull moment where we have not tried to cram in training. Especially this year with deployment on the horizon. On the topic of deployment, when the NG deploys they typically deploy individual units. Sometimes they will deploy entire battalions and sometimes you hear of a brigade combat team deploying but most of the time its individual units. All these soldiers have been in the same unit, training together etc. Sometimes a unit could be undermaned and open up slots for volunteers. Then you have soldiers from all over that state trying to jump in and sometimes from other states, depending on how large of a force is deploying. When we deploy as NG we get placed in Title 10 orders, meaning we are federally activated, in order to deploy over seas. This might be what you are refering to when you mention NG getting sent to active duty. After deployment is over we get demobalized and come off of Title 10 orders and return to our NG status.

    Month life is easy if you are lower enlisted or a junior leader. Not a lot is expected of you between drill except to stay in shape and keep your knowledge up. For those of us who are senior leaders our monthly life is busy during the week with NG stuff. I'm always taking care of soldier issues, preparing training, requesting training aids, doing lots of admin work etc. The higher in rank you go the more responsibility you have and the more busy you are during the month. We only get paid for the weekend of drill though, so its quite a commitment to take up. Being NG is part time, so you will obviously need a full time job to support yourself.

    For the 2 weeks a year of annual training(AT) we get together and train on what we have been going over the last year. In many cases AT is a culminating exercise over 2 weeks and is the run phase of that years training. Many times the unit gets tested on a particular core task that is assigned to them. The location of AT can vary from federal military posts to NG posts in the state to the armory that unit is assigned. It really depends. For example, this year my unit went to FT Leonard Wood for 3 weeks of training. The last 2 years before that we had our AT at our armory, which is located on a NG post. Every once in a while a NG unit might even travel outside the continental US(OCONUS) for AT. This can very greatly.

    If you hate BS then I have bad news for you, you will find it everywhere you go. The degree will vary from place to place but no place is completely devoid of it.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Going from active to national guard

      how often are guard units typically activated to deploy? it seems like the unit i am headed to only had one deployment and that was to iraq in 2004, does this mean theyre due for another deployment soon? or is deployment activation not set for every couple years as active duty units are? typically in active there is an 18 month break between deployments.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Going from active to national guard

        NG units are currently set up on a 5 year rotation, so once every 5 years. Now, this is not always the case as some units have deployed more frequently than others. Aviation in my state for instance, seems to deploy every 3 years. The 5 year rotation is a goal but its not the law.

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Going from active to national guard

          Awesome thanks for all the information, This has helped out a lot. Shouldnt be a terrible 4 years then

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Going from active to national guard

            Originally posted by dsieck89 View Post
            I am currently on active duty and will be getting out 16Aug2012, after discovering i was option 35 and cannot get IRR i had to pick a guard/reserve unit. It seems that i will be going to NJ national guard 3rd battalion 112th field artillery as a 68W (medic) I have 2 years of stabilization so i cannot be deployed and i have a service obligation until 26Feb2017. I have been deployed so the 2 years of stabilization is good but after that is what I am most curious about, I really know nothing about the guard but i always thought they all deployed together. I am hearing things about 150 or whatever the number is of soldiers from different national guard units getting sent to active duty units and deployed? How does this all work, it all seems foreign to me. I also saw somewhere that NJ national guard is in the JRTC rotation for january 2013 which would mean there should be an up coming deployment. any info on that?

            Also anything else you can tell me about national guard monthly life would be good, I am currently a line medic in an infantry battalion and quite fed up with the amount of BS that goes along with it, i imagine nowhere else can be as bad as this place so i am pretty optimistic about the guard. What do we do on drill weekends? and for the 2 weeks of training in the summer? from what I understand drill weekends are pretty sham and not much at all goes on.

            Thanks in advance and if there is any other helpful information you are able to give that would be greatly appreciated.
            What are your educational goals?

            You are going to the state that has one of the best educational benefits for guardsman in the country.

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Going from active to national guard

              Really? well thats good to hear, I currently am enrolled in a 4 year college to get my biology degree, i will be using the post 9/11 GI bill to pay for it and i have 60 credits currently, after I graduate I will be going to PA (physician assistant) school which is another 2 years, is there more educational benefits i am eligible for on top of the post 9/11 G.I bill?

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Going from active to national guard

                I am currently enrolled in a 4 year undergraduate school for my biology degree in which i have 60 credits. I will be attending the fall 2012 semester as i will be getting off active duty all being paid for by the post 9/11 GI bill. Then i plan on going to grad school to become a PA (physician assistant) . But i think by that point i will have exhausted almost all of my post 9/11 GI bill benefits. Is there more education benefits that i may be eligible for now that I will be going into the guard? thanks in advance.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Going from active to national guard

                  Originally posted by dsieck89 View Post
                  I am currently enrolled in a 4 year undergraduate school for my biology degree in which i have 60 credits. I will be attending the fall 2012 semester as i will be getting off active duty all being paid for by the post 9/11 GI bill. Then i plan on going to grad school to become a PA (physician assistant) . But i think by that point i will have exhausted almost all of my post 9/11 GI bill benefits. Is there more education benefits that i may be eligible for now that I will be going into the guard? thanks in advance.

                  Potentially, you may qualify for your Chapter 30, but it's my understand that once you've used all your Post 9/11 benefits, there's no applying for more. Here's what the VA website says. They are likely a more helpful place to start: http://www.gibill.va.gov/benefits/post_911_gibill/index.html

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