Recruiting Successes Continue in Fiscal 2009
By Donna Miles
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Nov. 10, 2008 Recruiting successes in fiscal 2008 continued into the first month of the new fiscal year, with all active and reserve components meeting or exceeding their October goals, defense officials reported today.
Recruiting remained solid across the board, with the Army leading the effort by exceeding its active-duty goal by 1 percent, its Army National Guard goal by 16 percent and its Army Reserve goal by 10 percent, officials said. The Army signed on 5,324 active-duty soldiers in October, as well as 6,487 National Guardsmen and 3,049 reservists.
The Marine Corps topped its October active-duty recruiting goal by 4 percent and its Marine Corps Reserve goal by 51 percent, officials reported. The Marines recruited 2,983 new active-duty members and 968 reservists.
The Navy reported a strong recruiting month as well, reaching its goals of 2,930 active-duty sailors and 664 reservists.
The Air Force also met its October goals by signing on 3,336 active-duty airmen and 856 reservists. The Air National Guard exceeded its monthly goal by 20 percent, with 913 recruits.
The October recruiting successes came on the heels of strong fiscal 2008 recruiting successes, with all military services and their reserve components meeting or exceeding their goals.
David S.C. Chu, undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness, called 2008 the strongest recruiting year since fiscal 2004.
In addition to attracting numbers, officials emphasized, recruiters brought in quality members. More than 92 percent of recruits hold a high school diploma, contrasted with 75 percent of the general U.S. population in the same age range, officials said.
Nearly 70 percent of new active-duty recruits came from the top half of those in the United States testing highest in math and verbal aptitude, and about three-quarters of new recruits come from neighborhoods that are at or above the U.S. median annual household income of about $50,000.
“[It] is a great tribute to the qualities of America’s youth today, their willingness to step forward, and their willingness to serve,” Chu said. “The fact that we are getting some of the best and brightest in our society is a great tribute to the spirit that young people put into the notion of public service today.”