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How to apply for Special Forces as current or prior military service member

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  • How to apply for Special Forces as current or prior military service member

    The Army National Guard does not have nor offer Special Forces enlistment contracts for current or prior service.

    In order to apply for Special Forces as current Army National Guard, Army Reserve, USMC, USMC Reserve or in Individual Ready Reserve (IRR), from stated branches/components. The first step is to meet the requirements for SF (see link below). If you are not currently serving and not in IRR, then you will usually be required to reenlist first (state/NG SF unit dependent). Some units may allow prior service civilians to apply with a signed liability waiver.

    Unfortunately, if you are currently serving or prior service with the Navy, Navy Reserve, US Coast Guard, US Coast Guard Reserves, Air Force, Air Force Reserve or Air National Guard and have never served in any Army or USMC component; you will be required to "first" attend and complete Army Basic Combat Training (BCT) and Army MOS training. The only exceptions to this are for current or prior Navy/Air Force SOF or Air Force Security Force personnel.

    See SF requirements thread here:

    If you meet the requirements. The second step is to coordinate and schedule to attend an SF Readiness Evaluation/Assessment drill (SFRE/SFAD), basically a try-out, with a NG SF unit. If you pass the SFRE/SFAD, based on your performance you will be placed on a Order of Merit List (OML), for attendance to SFAS.

    Physically preparing for SFRE/SFAS:

    An SFRE/SFAD can vary with each NG SF unit, but the minimum will usually consist of an Army Physical Fitness Test - APFT (utilizing 17-21 age standards), pull-ups and or rope climb, 4-6-mile run, ruck march with no less than 50lbs of weight for an undisclosed distance, 50 meter swim in uniform and boots and nonstandard individual and team physical events as briefed. The length of the program will vary with each SF unit. It can be anywhere from one weekend/drill (2-3 days) to 6 weekends/drills in duration.

    At that time if you are not serving in the Army National Guard, you will be required to enlist into that specific state, in order to be placed on the OML. Either waiting until the end of your current enlistment contract or submitting a "request for conditional release" (DD form 368). You would usually enlist as your current/former MOS, if it transfers over to an available MOS within that state. If you are serving in another state’s Guard, then you will have to initiate an inter-state transfer (IST) request.

    To apply, visit the NG Special Forces website:

    In order to apply for Special Forces in the Army National Guard as a current Active Duty Army soldier, there are two options.

    First and best option is to contact the Special Forces Recruiting Team for your post/region. Attempt to attend SFAS while still on active duty, if you are selected for Special Forces, you can still decide to transition* from Active Duty to the Army National Guard and most any NG SF unit will send you to SFQC after you complete transition to the Guard. Successful selection at SFAS is good for 24 months and you will not incur a mandatory service obligation for being selected.

    The other option is to transition* first from Active Duty to the Guard and continue with the above mentioned requirements/SFRE/SFAD process.

    * The best resource to transition from Active Duty Army to the Army National Guard is to talk with a Reserve Component Career Counselor (RCCC) for enlisted or the Reserve Component Transition Officer (Silver Siege Recruiter) for officers, located on all Army posts; usually in the same location as ACAP or post out processing. They can assist in finding a unit, with open availability, to transition into the Army National Guard. You can begin the process one year prior to your ETS date.
    Last edited by SF Hunter; October 22nd, 2014, 12:51 PM.