Joining a state guard has its benefits. You will learn many things, serve your community, help out in state emergencies, get military background on your resume, maybe even get perks from the state and its trust to you as a soldier, and at the same time, you do not serve in the federal missions, because you’re there to fill their place on their deployment.
- Do your research first. Find out if your state has a state guard, apart from the National Guard (and make sure the two aren’t confused). Be absolutely sure of the laws regarding the distinction of state forces and federal forces. Learn the benefits. Learn where the regiments and brigades are. Call a recruiter and learn more; perhaps attend a drill as a visitor and see what it’s like. Be absolutely sure with your research before starting the commitment.
- If you’re interested enough to take up service, make sure you have enough free time and resources (money, spare room in your house, etc.) before considering joining. Even the state-level military, being part-time and all, is a serious commitment to the country, the state, the public, and hey, even yourself. After all, you’re becoming a soldier, and it will be your duty to serve and attend the drills.
And yes, you will want money and time handy. Who knows when you need to buy equipment or drive somewhere on a day you would normally be doing something else. Remember, you’re committing your time to service.
- Ask the recruiter for information on how to enlist. You may need paperwork, such as a “Letter of Good Conduct” from your local police, and your medical records. Fill out everything and submit.
- Depending on the way drills are scheduled, visit the drills for any other details. Depending on the way things are done, you might be sworn in at one before actually attending Basic Training, and from there become a soldier, ‘on paper’.
- Show up at your drills, learn from other soldiers, and get ready for Basic Training.
Once you’ve joined, you’re one of many in the armed forces all over the country. Every soldier, whether in your own state, another state, or in the federal level, is a brother/sister-in-arms.
Good luck, soldier.