MILWAUKEE -- — Both 17-years-old, Breyonna Jackson and Anyiah Chambers of Milwaukee, are new U.S. Army recruits. Jackson is a nurse assistant and Chambers will be a Unit Supply Specialist, working with army supplies and equipment.
Both women felt it was the right fit, especially considering benefits like college tuition coverage.
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"I knew that I wanted to go to college and I wanted to go to law school but I didn't know how I was going to pay for it. So, I was like, I can join the army. I can serve my country for a lifetime of benefits," Chambers said.
"There's always income basically. You don't have to worry about, you know, am I ever going to lose my job? Because there are benefits even when you get out," Jackson said.
At a time when jobs are few and far between, the military continues to recruit. The Milwaukee Army Recruiting Battalion is doing face to face recruiting now, but because of COVID-19, from the end of March to the start of June, the recruiting was all virtual.
"I think it's been really effective especially with the younger generation. They are all about the social media and for them to reach out and to get a hold of them, I think it's very effective," said Lt. Col. Collin Keenan who heads out the battalion.
The battalion has thirty-six recruiting stations in Wisconsin and parts of Illinois and Michigan. Keenan says his group is meeting its goals by enlisting up to 200 recruits monthly. A big sign-on bonus could be what's catching recruits' attention.
"The bonuses for just for the initial sign-on bonus it ranges between $5,000 to $40,000," Lt. Col. Keenan said.
Those bonuses, Keenan explains are only for those enlisting in active duty high-demand jobs -- positions like a Linguist, a Medical Laboratory Specialist, Satellite Communications jobs, and Special Forces positions.
"I think it's definitely something people should consider especially during times like this," Jackson said.
"People think that when you join the army that you are always on the front line and that you're doing something with infantry and it's not. You can have a communications job, you can do medical, nursing, there's a wide range of fields to choose from," Chambers said.
Click here for more information on the Milwaukee Army Recruiting Battalion or text ADXG to "GO ARMY."