Military Shelling Out Big Bucks To Pull In Recruits


Wednesday, September 26th 2007, 5:00 pm
By: News On 6


The Army is aggressively working to meet its recruiting goals by adding high dollar bonuses for soldiers. A $20,000 enlistment bonus was added in July for active duty Army recruits who qualify under the Army's quick-ship program. Recruits who can report for training by the end of this month are also eligible. Oklahoma's National Guard also offers bonuses for new recruits. News On 6 anchor Craig Day reports the bonuses can be attractive for new citizen soldiers with a desire to serve their country.

The National Guard recruiting office in Sand Springs is a busy place, especially with the Guard offering a $20,000 bonus for recruits.

“The bonus is a nice incentive,” said Sergeant Michael Ponder, National Guard recruiter. “It's a very good thing for a young man or young woman who is coming in, it can help set them up for their future. It can be their springboard for the rest of their life."

But, Sergeant Michael Ponder with the National Guard says rather than bonuses, most new soldiers from Oklahoma join because of a love of their country.

"Anytime the country has called Oklahoma has always stepped forward to do their part to protect the country to serve their country," said Ponder.

That's the case with Specialist Mark White of Tulsa, he joined the guard a couple of years ago. White joined because of a family history of service, but says a $10,000 bonus was a nice extra.

"A lot of people need it, get a new car, down payment on a house, or use it to move up a little bit," Specialist Mark White said.

Private Brent Fletcher, who got a $20,000 bonus for signing up six months ago, also says the extra money is nice, but duty is his prime motivator.

"I've always wanted to be in this uniform, and say that I've served my country, and say that I've been a part of it and I've protected the freedom," Private Brent Fletcher said.

Whatever the reasons for joining, Oklahoma is near the top in the nation for soldiers ready to join and serve.

The amount of benefits often is determined by the length of service. The Army National Guard also offers a loan repayment program and help with college

If you’re interested in joining the National Guard, or would like more information about it, visit their website, www.okguard.org.

Watch the video: Military Offering Big Signing Bonuses