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La. Guard achieves recruiting blitz in March

By Staff Sgt. David C. Kirtland, Louisiana National Guard Public Affairs Office

NEW ORLEANS—The Louisiana National Guard’s Recruiting and Retention Command achieved 130 enlistments in March, including 124 through the Military Processing Station, four inter-service recruitments, and two interstate transfers.

“During the Future Battle Blitz in March, we asked each representative who attends the Recruit Sustainment Program to bring a buddy to drill,” said Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Taylor, recruiting marketing noncomissioned officer in charge. “It allowed us to showcase what our Soldiers do and what we’re about.”

The Future Battle Blitz achieved 263 leads during March drill and 10 new enlistments with 44% of Soldiers bringing someone in for the event.

So far, in FY24, LAARNG has sworn in 585 enlistments, including active-duty recruits and interstate transfers. The State achieved 546 enlistments through the Military Entrance Processing Station.

“This whole year we are almost 30 to 40 recruits per month ahead of what we were just two years ago. It’s all about company leadership,” said Command Sgt. Maj. Patrick Sandel, recruiting and retention senior enlisted advisor. “We’re training the company commanders, first sergeants and section chiefs. They’ve owned it, and that is where all of our success is coming from.”

Out of the 54 States and territories, Louisiana finished in the top three nationally last year of 21 medium states, behind New Jersey and Minnesota, for the National Guard’s recruiting mission. The Louisiana Army National Guard has maintained 81% or better in retention for a four-year average.

“The more we can put in, the better off the units are,” said Sandel. “It helps units maintain numbers for their unit manning roster, have all hazards and fulfill our federal mission.”

Louisiana Army and Air recruits enjoy additional advantages, including access to the State Tuition Exemption Program, Patriot Scholarship, TOPS kicker and Pell Grants. Leveraging the State Tuition Exemption and the Patriot Scholarship enables a LANG student to graduate debt-free.

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