Some schools are barring recruiters from talking to students, Army secretary says

Joining the Military
Recruits take the oath of enlistment before a NFL game in Arizona, November 2018. Photo: Alun Thomas/U.S. Army Recruiting

Army Secretary Mark Esper said on Friday that some schools "are not letting our recruiters in" to talk to students, and some school counselors "are not even presenting [the Army] as an opportunity, the chance to serve their country."


"It's considered the only path to success is college, and that there are no other paths," Esper said at a Center for Strategic and International Studies event. "I just think we need to do a better job across America and our school districts, our states, our cities, to present the American military as a great path for the future."

This resistance presents a bit of a roadblock for an Army with a renewed focus on recruiting this year after failing to meet its goals in 2018. The service announced its intent to recruit more aggressively outside of its typical comfort zone of the South, Southeast, and Midwest, and to push into 22 major cities like Boston, San Francisco, and New York.

Esper told reporters at a Pentagon roundtable on January 24th that the campaign to recruit in those cities had been "positive so far." But he told reporters after the CSIS event that there's a "spectrum" of support found at schools around the country — some don't let recruiters in at all, some may let them in on "very restrictive purposes," and others are less restrictive.

Esper clarified that he wasn't necessarily referring to schools in those 22 cities that were resisting recruiters, and that he hasn't assessed where in the country this problem is most prominent.

But, he said, all schools "should allow recruiters in just like they let in colleges to come recruit. ... We should have equal access to America's youth."

Army Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley had previously echoed the importance of expanding recruiting efforts on January 16th, telling reporters at an Association of the United States Army breakfast that around 50% of Army recruits "come from about 10 to 15% of American's high schools."

"We need to expand - and we're doing that this year – rapidly expand the footprint by which we are canvassing to get recruits to come into Army," he said.

Task and Purpose Pentagon correspondent Jeff Schogol contributed to this story.

SEE ALSO: The Army Is Fielding Hundreds Of More Recruiters After Failing To Bring In New Soldiers

WATCH NEXT: Gen. Petraeus On Answering The Call

The submarine tender USS Emory S. Land (AS 39) sits anchored at Ulithi Atoll, Dec. 7, 2019 (Navy photo/Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Richard A. Miller)

The Navy is investigating dozens of videos of service members changing in a bathroom which were then shared on the website PornHub, according to a NBC News report.

According to the report, an agent from the Naval Criminal Investigative Service found the videos on PornHub earlier this month. The videos, which have since been taken down, show civilians, sailors and Marines, some of whom have visible name tapes.

Read More
U.S. Army/Jaerett Engeseth

We already knew that Army Rangers were a unique breed of badass, but performing real-time blood transfusions while under enemy fire on the battlefield takes it to an entirely new level.

Read More
(@realspaceforce/Twitter)

An upcoming comedy show is boldly mocking what everyone else is, well, already mocking: The Space Force.

Read More
The Kremlin

Editor's Note: The following is an op-ed. The opinions expressed are those of the author, and do not necessarily reflect the views of Task & Purpose.

A recent report from the Vietnam Veterans of America says that American vets are targeted by Russians and other adversarial governments online. Specifically, there are many Facebook pages and other social media catering to vets that are really operated by foreign entities.

Some may ask, so what? If the pages are fun, why does it matter who runs them? The intelligence officer in Moscow isn't running a Facebook page for American veterans because he has an intense interest in motivational t-shirts and YouTube rants in pickup trucks.

He's doing it to undermine the political and social fabric of the United States.

Read More
A C-17 Globemaster III banks in the early morning light after paratroopers assigned to the 4th Infantry Brigade Combat Team (Airborne), 25th Infantry Division, U.S. Army Alaska, conducted a parachute jump on Malemute drop zone at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska, Dec. 11, 2019. (U.S. Air Force photo/Justin Connaher)

An Alaska-based airman died on Thursday after local police shot him for brandishing a shotgun in front of them. The airman, 26-year-old Tech Sgt. Gage Southard, was assigned to 673rd Communications Squadron at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, base officials said in a statement sent to Task & Purpose.

"The loss of Tech. Sgt. Southard is devastating," said Col. Patricia Csànk, Joint Base Commander. "My deepest condolences and prayers are with Tech. Sgt. Southard's wife and family, and his fellow Airmen. This is a tragedy for our entire team."

Read More