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U.S. Army recruits Montana youth to serve nation


September 27, 2019

Press release

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah — The U.S. Army announced at the Pentagon that it will achieve its nationwide recruiting goal of 68,000 new soldiers this year.

As part of the overall goal, Salt Lake City Army Recruiting Battalion hired about 500 new soldiers from Montana.

“Our recruiters work hard finding the right people to fill our ranks,” said Lt. Col Raphael Vasquez, who leads the recruiters in the battalion. “We are thankful to the community for supporting the decision of local youth to be part of something bigger than themselves. Newly hired soldiers in this area are developing their skills as infantrymen, combat medics, and cavalry scouts, as well as a variety of other careers.”

Because of the cognitive, physical and moral requirements, only 29 percent of youth qualify for military service, so filling the Army’s ranks with the level of quality needed is challenging, according to Maj. Gen. Frank Muth, who leads U.S. Army Recruiting Command, based at Fort Knox, Kentucky. Despite the economic and societal challenges recruiters face, they successfully enlisted a quality force this year, he added.

“We have been successful this year because we overhauled how we do business in order to reach the right talent,” Muth said. “We are focused on being more relatable to today’s young people and reaching them where they are — on social media, on their mobile devices and on gaming platforms.”

When comparing the overall quality of recruits today to quality a decade ago, there is a marked difference, Muth said. In considering high school diplomas, GEDs, moral waivers and aptitude scores, overall quality of recruits has improved by 30 percent in the last decade.

“The Army has so much to offer young people in Montana,” Vasquez said. “Most people just aren’t aware of the careers, training, credentials and education we provide. We are working hard to change some of the misperceptions that exist about military service.”

For more information about how the Army has impacted hiring in Montana or to request an interview with a local recruiter, please contact please contact Jeff Ross or Jo Cappeto at Salt Lake Army Recruiting Battalion Public Affairs [email protected] or 801-834-2368.


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