Pentagon Says 100% of 2010 Army and Marine Recruits Were H.S. Grads: Air Force and Navy Not So Educated
H.S. Grads Are Flocking to Military
CINCINNATI (TDB) -- The Defense Department is crowing: All 74,577 soldiers recruited into the U.S. Army in fiscal year 2010 have a high school diploma, which is a quality record. The Marines had 28,041 recruits and they, too, were all grads -- another first. Those are the two branches of the military that do most of the fighting -- they have infantry and field artillery. In the old days, brawn was more important than brains. Of the Air Force's 28,493 newest members, 99% finished high school. 98% of the Navy's 34,180 sailors held diplomas -- last place. Clifford Stanley, the undersecretary of defense for personnel and readiness, said the down economy helped create a banner year for recruiting -- high unemployment spurred young Americans to sign up and all four services met their quotas. Stanley said 7 of 10 Americans in the prime age groups for enlistment -- ages 17 to 24 --are ineligible due to medical, educational or conduct (i.e. law enforcement, drug use) issues. Still, Stanley said patriotism and love of country motivate people to enlist:
"As we look at where we are right now in terms of the challenges facing us, it's more to it than the economy. To a person -- serving their nation, doing it with honor, being patriots -- seems to be the recurring theme that come up every time we look at and talk to those who are wearing a uniform today. And we're still proud to have that in our active and our reserve components, and our Guard."