U.S. Military

  • Do you want to develop your leadership skills?
  • Are you a U.S. citizen committed to serving your nation?
  • Are you a team player?
  • Are you looking for research and problem-solving experience?

If so, then you should consider a career in the U.S. military.

Career Tracks

There are hundreds of ways to make a living in the Military, and many of these careers provide the training and experience needed for a rewarding second career in the private sector or government. There is no guarantee that service members will receive the jobs they want, as the Services determine where each individual’s skills are needed most.

The United States military can be broadly divided into five branches: the Army, the Navy, the Air Force, the Marine Corps, and the Coast Guard. In each branch of the military, service members are classified as officers or enlisted personnel. Officers generally exercise supervisory roles. Careers areas include everything from combat operations to social work to environmental health and safety.

  • Enlisted Personnel perform specific job functions and have the knowledge that ensures the success of their unit’s current mission within the armed forces.
  • Warrant Officers are highly specialized experts and trainers in their career field. Warrant Officers remain single-specialty Officers – progressing within their career field.
  • Commissioned Officers are members of a unique fellowship that spans the nation’s history; they are entrusted leaders who are responsible for completing demanding missions while ensuring the welfare, morale, and professional development of soldiers.
Joining the Military

Individuals seriously considering joining the military should first do their homework. Each of the service branches maintains websites explaining in detail the process of joining the military. The process differs slightly for each branch. Each branch also has slightly different requirements. A student desiring to become an officer generally attends the Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) while in college or Office Candidate School upon graduation.Each branch maintains its own ROTC program. Yale University offers an ROTC program that allows students to achieve their Yale undergraduate or graduate degree while receiving military training. Undergraduate and graduate students are eligible for military financial assistance for the tuition.

Each branch also maintains its own Officer Candidate School. Successful applicants to Officer Candidate School must:

  • Attain a minimum score on the Armed Forces Vocational Aptitude Battery (ASVAB) test.
  • Possess a bachelor’s degree.
  • Fulfill minimum height and weight standards, pass a physical, and have a clean criminal record.

Interested individuals should inquire with the appropriate military recruiting station in New Haven.


Non-cash compensation represents almost 60 percent of the military benefits package, which includes health care, retirement pay, childcare, housing and education. The other 40% consists of a regular salary. Military personnel are eligible for undergraduate loan payoffs and graduate school funding. Officers generally receive more generous compensation than enlisted personnel. Compensation varies by branch and rank.

Fast Facts

Who? The military offers job experience for individuals with various backgrounds, whether it be arts and media, aviation, combat, engineering, intelligence research, legal, medical, mathematical, etc.

Where? Positions in the military are offered across the country, as well as in international bases. Whether you are looking to travel abroad, work in the Washington, D.C. headquarters in the Pentagon, or serve locally from your home, the military provides flexible options.

When? Individuals between the ages of 18 and 30 are eligible for military training. Candidates for commissioned offers must commit 3 years to Officer Candidate School.

How? There are 4 ways to become an officer:

  1. Officer Candidate School
  2. ROTC
  3. Academy
  4. Direct Command

About 60% of those who apply to Army Officer Candidate School are selected for admission. Civilian applicants to Officer Candidate School do not compete with enlisted military applicants.