Military officials have long valued education. Recent trends show these same senior leaders linking military promotions to the education levels more junior military service members they supervise possess. This growing trend is another reason that getting degrees from accredited colleges and universities can enrich your military career.
In the January 2, 2010 Army Times “What’s Ahead for Soldiers in 2010” article it’s reported that, the Army’s 2010 promotion plan will, “include separate point scales for promotions to sergeant and staff sergeant, a strong link between military education and promotions, and a new scoring system that will award points for combat deployments.”
This education link connects military training with promotion levels, a long standing tradition in the United States military. However, some of this training is mandatory, not a sign of how dedicated you are to advancing your career and professional development. For example, an Army enlisted member must generally complete basic training, also referred to as boot camp, and some technical training before securing the Second Class title.
The further up the chain of command you go, the more important it may be for you to complete college courses. For example, newly enlisted Army Specialists must generally have four years of college education or work experience in the civilian workforce. And of course, officers must complete at least four years of college education, showing that the link between education and the military extends beyond rank, impacting salary as well.
Before you enroll in colleges and universities, make sure the postsecondary schools are accredited by organizations recognized by the United States Department of Education. This way you can avoid getting degrees from schools employers, including military organizations, do not value. Furthermore, and because you will likely retire from the military some day, research degree fields using tools and resources like the Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics occupational outlook handbooks.
Information provided in the handbooks lets you know the average pay for certain occupations, how much the jobs are expected to grow over the next decade, educational requirements necessary to get hired into the jobs and top industries and regions for the jobs. Complete this homework now and you can get college degrees in career fields that are expected to experience job stability and increasing salary levels over the next several years.Linking promotions to education levels is no longer just happening in the civilian workforce. It is also happening in the military, senior leaders viewing the effort to complete a postsecondary education as a sign of commitment to professional growth and development. Fortunately, the Department of Defense provides military professionals like you, at the enlisted and officer ranks, with tuition assistance options, making it easy to pay for college.