Army looking to bring veterans and retirees back into service, into the Army Reserves

Individual Ready Reserve soldiers wait in line to speak to Army Reserve career counselors that update their contact information and offer reenlistment opportunities March 31, 2012 during a muster at Fort Snelling, Minn.

The US Army appears to be looking to pad the numbers of reservists in certain fields, unleashing a new initiative to increase readiness in certain fields by pooling talent from the Individual Ready Reserve.

According to a press release by the 81st Readiness Division, the “designed to bring skilled Soldiers back on duty as a member of the Army Reserve while playing an important role in increasing unit readiness,” targeting IRR troops who may wish to return to duty.

The Individual Ready Reserve (IRR) is a category of the Ready Reserve of the Reserve Component of the Armed Forces of the United States composed of former active duty or reserve military personnel.   It is comprised primarily of Soldiers who need to fulfill their Military Service Obligation (MSO) under their original contracts.

Active duty Soldiers transitioning into the IRR are also eligible to participate, with soldiers holding previous experience as administrative specialists, mechanics, motor transport operators or other high demand occupational specialties taking top priority.

If selected, soldiers serve up to 29 days on Annual Training (AT) status as an “applicant.” If approved, the soldier has an opportunity to serve full-time on Active Duty for Operational Support (ADOS), leading to a full-time Military Technician (or “MILTECH”) position.

Some soldiers are currently looking into the program, with many citing the stability of military life, pay and benefits.

“This sounded like a good opportunity, for good benefits and pay” said six-year veteran Specialist David Mull, who spent a year in IRR. “It will help bring some stability for my family as well.”

81st RD Headquarters and Headquarters Company Commander Major Nicholas Dolezal sees the new program as a way to retain good troops who left Active service and pool their talent into a more “life-friendly” organization like the Army Reserve.

“I’ve spoken with several Soldiers currently in the IRR who have thought about getting back into uniform, they all had these valuable skills which are in high demand by the Army Reserve. It’s great to see them taking this opportunity to help themselves while increasing readiness.” Dolezal said.

The 81st RD is responsible for “unified land operations, provides geographic supports activities.”

Applicants for the 81st Readiness Division must meet all eligibility requirements before being approved for Reserve duty, ADOS tours, or MILTECH positions.

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