Pentagon wants to recruit new sailors, so it will pay off student loans up to $65,000
The US Navy has a unique tactic to attract Americans who are drowning in student debt. They offer enlistment bonuses up to $50,000, which is not sufficient to entice enough sailors to sign up.
The Navy announced Saturday that recruits who ship by September 30, and fulfill other conditions, will be eligible to receive $65,000 loan repayments. This brings their bonus potential up to $115,000 The offer applies to new sailors and to veterans who seek to return to service and who didn’t receive a bonus for their first enlistment.
“This is an opportunity without precedent”This could also be. “life-altering”Navy Recruiting Command Chief Rear Adm. Lex Walker spoke out in support of those with student loan debt. One in five Americans has student loan debt. The average amount is $30,000. The country’s student borrowings total nearly $1.75 trillion.
This offer is just six months following the Navy’s increase in maximum enlistment bonuses to $50,000 (from $40,000) due to a more competitive labor market. That incentive apparently wasn’t enough to fill the personnel need, as all branches of the US military are reportedly struggling to meet their 2022 recruiting targets.
Pentagon estimates that less than 1% (17–24 year-old Americans) are either eligible for or willing to join military service. 77% are considered disqualified due to obesity, drug abuse or criminal record. The remaining 23% are not interested in joining the military.
A Pentagon survey in 2019 found that more than 17% US military personnel were obese even among active-duty troops. At 22%, the Navy was the branch with highest obesity rates.
These incentives help Navy recruit for the required job positions. “to ensure fleet readiness,”A memo issued by the Navy Recruiting Command on Thursday stated that there were no caps. The bonus caps are different depending on the specialty. A recruit assigned to high-demand nuclear jobs such as electronics technicians can receive a maximum bonus of $50,000. Special warfare boat and hospital crewmen are eligible for bonuses up to $38,000. Air rescue swimmers may also be eligible.
In times of great need, recruiters may be more flexible. The Navy, for instance, offered $25,000 in enlistment bonuses to recruits that were willing and able to send out their ships before the summer.