Every recruit must ask themselves the same question; why do I want to join the Oklahoma National Guard? Is it for the great benefits? The training? Am I called to serve? Whether you answer yes to one or all three, everyone has their reasons for serving their state and their country. Sand Springs High School’s Nataley Crawford had her own reasons as well.
“I decided I wanted to join the military when my recruiter, who I didn’t know was going to end up being my recruiter (SSG Sloan), came into my 11th grade English class and presented to us. I decided to join because not only was I getting to serve but it was something a lot bigger than myself and I take a lot of pride in that,” said Crawford.
By enlisting into the Oklahoma National Guard, Crawford knew she wanted to do something challenging.
“The recruiting process was a lot easier than expected, mind you there was a lot of paperwork but when you think about what you’re getting yourself into and signing up for it’s worth it,” Crawford said. “My job for the guard, also known as my MOS (Military Occupational Specialty) is a 12B, or a 12 Bravo, which is a Combat Engineer,” said Crawford.
The benefits Crawford will receive as a member of the Oklahoma National Guard are substantial. She plans on using her education benefits to attend college and graduate owing no money.
“I will most definitely be using the education benefits to go to college and attend med school. I want to be an emergency room general surgeon and with the benefits the U.S. Army offers for college, I have no doubt that I will be right where I want to be,” said Crawford.
Crawford is well on her way to meeting her goals. She completed basic training and is scheduling her AIT (Advanced Individual Training) for next year. Once complete and after she has graduated from Charles Page High School, Crawford will be well on her way to gaining her degree and having a rewarding career in the National Guard.
“What I love most about serving my country and state is the fact that I get to help others, but in a way that is a lot bigger then you and I,” said Crawford.