With 5 branches to choose from, there is a wide range of opportunities that can be granted due to serving our country. While being a service member, one can pursue a multitude of careers that can carry on even after active duty has ended.
Here are some of the benefits of joining the military:
- A guaranteed paycheck and Cash Bonuses
- Education Benefits
- Advanced and Specialty Training
- 30 days annual paid vacation
Option for full-time or part-time service
- Tax-free room, board, and allowances
- Health and Dental Care
- Use of commissary and Military Exchange stores
- Special home loans and discounts
- Unparalleled sense of patriotism, duty, honor, and selfless service
- Highly sought-after skills, leadership, and training experience
Keep in mind however that it does require a lot of sacrifices and hard work so you need to be completely certain of your decision before enlisting! If this is the right decision for you, check out the different branches, their respective academies, and the steps to enlist below.
The Air Force is part of the Department of Defense (DOD). It’s responsible for aerial military operations, defending U.S. airspace and air bases, and building landing strips. The Air Force Space Command is under this branch. Service members are known as airmen. The reserve components are Air National Guard and Air Force Reserve.
The Army is part of the DOD and is the largest of the five military branches. It handles major ground combat missions, especially operations that are ongoing. The Army Special Forces unit is known as the Green Berets for its headgear. Service members are known as soldiers. The reserve components are Army Reserve and Army National Guard.
The Coast Guard is part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). It’s responsible for maritime law enforcement, including drug smuggling. It manages maritime search and rescue and marine environmental protection. It also secures ports, waterways, and the coasts. Service members are known as Coast Guardsmen, nicknamed Coasties. The reserve component is Coast Guard Reserve.
The Marine Corps is part of the DOD. It provides land combat, sea-based, and air-ground operations support for the other branches during a mission. This branch also guards U.S. embassies around the world and the classified documents in those buildings. Marine Corps Special Operations Command (MARSOC) members are known as Raiders. All service members are referred to as Marines. The reserve component is Marine Corps Reserve.
The Navy is part of the DOD. It protects waterways (sea and ocean) outside of the Coast Guard’s jurisdiction. Navy warships provide the runways for aircraft to land and take off when at sea. Navy SEALs (sea, air, and land) are the special operations force for this branch. All service members are known as sailors. The reserve component is Navy Reserve.