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Civil Affairs in National Guard

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  • Civil Affairs in National Guard

    I was talking with my officer recruiter about the review boards and while we were talking she mentioned civil affairs and that she thought it would be a good long term option for me.We didnt get into alot of detail so I thought I would ask here. I have read that the Guard has civil affairs positions but not units. What would that role of a civil affairs officer be in the National Guard and do all states have one? What is the training like?

  • #2
    Civil Affairs is not an entry level branch. Officers are go into this when they are 1LT promotable or Captains.

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    • #3
      That is what the recruiter said. And that is fine. I was just wondering how the Civil Affairs works in the National Guard. It is something I would like to know more about in case I do decide to transition into it when I get time in to do so.

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      • #4
        Since you have 5-6 years at the minimum to think about it, why not worry about short term stuff like Basic, OCS ect.

        There are a lot of things in the NG and USAR that sound, look or work well on Active Duty but don't work well in the reserve components. This is one of those times.

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        • #5
          You'll find a few CA slots at a BCT and Division HQ. It's not enough to make a career, even after (as the others have stated) you have a few years of basic branch service.

          My recommendation is for you to serve admirably in a combat arms branch, and after company command re-evaluate your situation. If you still want to pursue CA, then the Army Reserve has units all around the country -- although not necessarily close to you. Many CA Soldiers love what they do, which means they drive many long hours to drill. Also, those CA units mobilized constantly even before 9-11, so it's a big lifestyle change. You have a few years, find some serving CA Soldiers, and ask about their experience to see if this is a good fit for you for the long-term.

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          • #6
            I cannot speak on experience in a CA slot for the National Guard but I can tell you about being in Civil Affairs as an enlisted soldier. For starters, it is a different breed of Army when compared to NG, USAR, and AD. What I mean by that is you will be in constant communication with a CPT or above, you will be in a team of 4 generally when deployed and attached to an AD element. For me it was the 101st and 82nd Airborne. So you have to be extremely comfortable with change, interpersonal communication, and being able to assess situations WAY beyond your paygrade. I filled in a CPT slot during my first deployment by being the XO to a Major that I had to brief everyday and create OPORDs.

            People will look at you crazy because you roll outside the wire (meaning you go on missions) every SINGLE DAY. I am warning you now if you go CA Reserves when you deploy be prepared to either be sleeping outside under the stars for 2 weeks or more at a time. Going on multiple missions each day and filling in for any role in which your team currently lacks. You will generally have SECFOR (Infantry Platoon from your attached BN) but sometimes they will have their own mission to complete. QRF, Tower Guard, filling in for others. It is just a different breed, many times my TL (CPT) was the Gunner, Driver or Security. Just be ready to do everything they taught you in basic.

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