Military recruitment up with down economy

December 2, 2008 12:00:00 AM PST
The troubled economy is causing problems for a wide range of businesses, but the military may actually be benefitting. The Pentagon reports they're having the strongest recruiting year since 2004 and it seems many in the military are choosing to reenlist rather than face a bleak job market.

Paul Jauch's son, Joseph, is an army specialist who spent three and a half years in the Army and got out in 2004.

"He took several different jobs and couldn't find one that really suited him. He went back to school," said Paul.

He also got married back then to his junior high school sweetheart.

"He realized that to support a family because they do have a child and another on the way, that he wasn't able to make the kind of money he could and have the security he did in the Army," said Paul.

So after a two year hiatus Joseph reenlisted in September of last year. He's in Texas now where he was able to buy a house with the Army's help. He'll go back to Iraq in January for a second tour. His reenlistment wasn't just for economic reasons. His family says he missed his unit and the mission he signed up for after November of 2001.

"I'm proud that he's made this decision. He has so much honor wanting to serve his country," said Heather Jauch, Joseph's mother.

The Pentagon says that over the last four years they've seen a 20 percent increase in soldiers wanting to stay in the Army.

They cite the poor economy and a less violent Iraq as being good motivators for young men. Men who want a career or just a secure job even if they have to go back into combat.

Sgt. Kunta McGoley says many of the reenlisted soldiers he's spoken to have wanted to stay in because they enjoy the profession and security.

"We have what a lot of people are looking for, job security. And if you're looking at job security and not having a job, well you'll probably go for job security," said Sgt. McGoley.


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