Already Enlisted...stay Guard or go Reserves?


Hello All,

I am currently enlisted in the Guard, I have eight years service time. I am applying to nursing programs and hope to start school 2017. I will be on a fast track BSN because I already have a BS in Biology. I contacted a medical recruiter and I am waiting on some information on AMEDD and other resources. As I talked to the recruiter, it became apparent that my best option might be to stay in my current MOS, finish the BSN, and then apply for direct commission into the Reserves. Does anyone have experience with trying to go into the Reserves from the Guard? It seems like it's hard to transition out of the Guard, they are so worried about numbers. What about going active duty from Guard?

Also, when choosing a school for the BSN program, how important is it that the school have a high rating? If the school is accredited that should be enough, right? What credentials will the Army critique me on when applying for commission?

Editorial Team / Moderator

Lunah, MSN, RN

33 Articles; 13,748 Posts

Specializes in EMS, ED, Trauma, CNE, CEN, CPEN, TCRN. Has 15 years experience.

Who is doing this "rating" of the school? You need to worry about the program being accredited, you're correct. The Army will want to see that you have a high GPA.

But the Army has no AD recruiting mission right now for new grads without experience with the exception being ROTC grads, and I think the Reserves wants experience as well (possibly less — 6 months, I seem to recall?). There are a lot of experienced nurses who have tried to go AD from Reserves without success; the Army is currently reducing its numbers of AD nurses via involuntary separation boards, if that gives you an idea of what the current state is. Did the recruiter mention that?

But by the time you finish school, the recruiting picture may have changed. Definitely keep in touch with the AMEDD recruiters.

I figured it would be hard to go AD, it seems that way no matter your skill set with all the downsizing.

College ranking and reviews through US News and such, and trying to pick a school that has a good record of graduates gaining immediate employment. Although, at this point I'm kind of thinking as long as it's a BSN program does it even matter? I just want to pick a school that is going to give me the most credits for my previous degree so I can get through a second degree faster.

I think going Reserve would be a smart decision. I only spoke with the recruiter briefly. I have an acquaintance that is going to make sure I am in touch with the proper channel. One good thing about already being enlisted is that I have a lot of friends in many different fields.

I feel like I am a candidate for an age waiver based on the fact that my service time continues to accrue while I am going to school. By the time I achieve the BSN, I will have 10 years of service and I believe I read somewhere you have to be able to do 20 years by the time you are 60.

Even if I never commission, I am going to pursue this as a civilian career. I would like to be a nurse anesthetist once finished with this adventure. For now being Guard allows me to take advantage of the EDD benefit.