Posted on Jan 4, 2020
SFC John Peters  CWDP: BES, JSS
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I'm curious if a soldier can change their MOS if they transfer from Army Reserve to the active Army?

I am a former Army Recruiter (over 25 years ago) and I know back then that if a soldier wanted to go from Reserve/Guard to active duty...they were not allowed to change their MOS. The logic being that Uncle Sam already paid thousands to train you once and they are not going to spend thousands more to train you again for a different job.

The reason I'm asking is because a friend of mine has a son who's planning to join the Army Reserve in the next couple of weeks (has apparently already reserved his MOS slot). However, his ultimate goal is to go active duty as a tanker. My fear is that he hasn't mentioned this to his reserve recruiter. And if he did...the recruiter is probably lying to him or blowing smoke up his rear end by telling him it's no problem switching MOS's.

Thanks in advance for any help you can provide. Like I said...it's been 25 years since I my dark days of recruiting and I'm sure some things have probably changed.
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Responses: 7
SFC Retention Operations Nco
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Yes they can switch their MOS when going active, if the Army has a need for the MOS they want.

A better question is why doesn't the kid join the NG as a tanker and then he has the MOS once he goes Active?
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SFC John Peters  CWDP: BES, JSS
SFC John Peters CWDP: BES, JSS
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He's actually planning to join the Army Reserve and go into an MOS in the medical field (can't remember the exact MOS). But is ultimate goal is to go active duty and be a tank crewman.
I was thinking the same thing...why the heck would you want to join the reserves when your goal is to go active duty?
Unfortunately, I saw a lot of this while I was on recruiting duty. NG & Reserve recruiters giving sales pitches to high school kids encouraging them to go part-time to "try it out" to see if you like it first. Then telling then they can always go active duty anytime and go Airborne Ranger, SF, Delta and play Rambo, etc.
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SFC Retention Operations Nco
SFC (Join to see)
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SFC John Peters CWDP: BES, JSS it sounds like the kid in the candy store problem. Kids walk into my office and want to be John Rambo, but also want to go into nursing and MI so their plan is to switch MOS's six times so they can get experience as a dog handler so they can get out and join the fire department.
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SFC John Peters  CWDP: BES, JSS
SFC John Peters CWDP: BES, JSS
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I can't tell you the number of times I would have a person with 1 or 2 years in the NG or Reserve come up to me as a recruiter and tell me they were ready to go active duty. My first question would be..."what's your MOS in the NG/Reserve?". The answer would usually be something like generator mechanic, etc. I would then be forced to dash the kid's hopes by saying..."well guess what you're going to be in the Active Army?". That's right...a generator mechanic! :(
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SFC John Peters  CWDP: BES, JSS
SFC John Peters CWDP: BES, JSS
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SFC (Join to see) - You are spot on with that comment! LOL
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CPL Gary Pifer
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He should be a guest at a NG Armored unit and shadow them.. for the weekend.. therefore he can see if he likes tanks... I worked a lot with tanks as a CAV Scout, but only as a standing up TC to move them from Farm to training areas as I was too big to fit inside..I also had problems when they fired... and got hurt and suffered deafness in a firing accident HE round back blast. It take a special person to be a tanker.
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SFC Brigade Operations (S3)
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Yes, most often do, you will got to AIT as MOS-T instead of MOS-I
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