This archived article was written by: Nathaniel Woodward
Just being a student at a university sets you apart, you are spending time, effort and money to make yourself a better person. Some however, go above and beyond, not only by making themselves a better person, but making the world a better, and safer place. Sophomore Brooklyn Joseph, a wildlife science major from Sandy, Utah, is just such a person. Her career goals include graduating with her bachelor’s degree and becoming a wildlife officer with the Division of Wildlife Recourses.
Joseph felt the need to do more and the Army National Guard provided her with the opportunity she needed. “I joined the Utah Army National Guard to provide myself with new and better opportunities than I could get from doing anything else, as well as to prove that I can accomplish any goal I set for myself. I always dreamed of doing something bigger and better than myself and I knew serving my country was what would allow me to do so. The Army National Guard was most appealing to me because of the community service and the involvement in the community aspect, which is something I am very passionate about and something that will benefit me in my future law enforcement career,” Joseph stated.
On top of the honor that comes with serving your country, the National Guard provided Joseph with great incentives in her education. “A huge part of my decision to join the Army National Guard was the fact that I could go to school while serving my country. Not only am I able to do both, but my college is paid for. Every branch of the military offers the G.I. Bill, which will pay for college, and there is also federal-tuition assistance that service members are able to use. However, because the National Guard is both a federal and state entity, we have the opportunity to use our G.I. Bill, federal-tuition assistance or even state-tuition assistance, or state-tuition waiver. I am a full-time student with 17 credit hours and through the use of state-tuition assistance, I only had to pay $175 for this semester.”
Of course, by joining the military comes basic training, a daunting process even for the most physically fit. “Basic training is roughly 10 weeks and it is a challenging experience, but also enjoyable and rewarding. I went to basic training at Ft. Leonard Wood, Missouri. I loved basic training and the fact that I was getting paid to do what people pay to do, like shooting many weapons, throwing grenades, obstacle courses and many other things. My favorite parts of basic training were the ruck marches and the days we spent out in the field training. I also enjoyed getting to shoot a lot and even though the PT really sucked some days, it was so worth it. You come out of this experience physically and mentally tough,” Joseph commented.
By going through such a trying process and with the prospect of serving her country for many more years, Joseph remains optimistic about her future. “Would I do it again if I could go back in time? In a heart beat. I love the National Guard and all of the opportunities and incredible people this experience has provided me with. I have grown so much throughout my short time in the Guard. I am much more confident and feel as though I can, and will, succeed at anything I set my mind to.”
Students like Joseph are the reason USU Eastern has the reputation it does, full of students willing to go the extra mile and when needed, able to step up and make hard decisions. If a career in the military interests you, you can visit www.usmilitary.com to view opportunities to serve.