Despite Threat of War, Recruitment Remains Steady - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

1/9/03

Despite Threat of War, Recruitment Remains Steady

"We're able to be deployed anywhere in the world and be anywhere within 72 hours," said Sgt. Adrian Gomez.

He's a recruiter with the U.S. Marines. And despite the War on Terrorism and flaring tensions in the Persian Gulf, the rate of people signing up for service has stayed about the same as always.

"Our numbers as a whole have stayed pretty consistent," said Gomez. "As far as operations concern, as far as more people calling and coming in, there's been a slight increase," he said.

"We're lucky to be in the state of Texas because everybody is so patriotic," said Captain Jonathan Studer.

At the Army recruiting center, he reports the same steady pace of new recruits, and answers the frequently asked question: If I sign up, will I see any action?

"There is a possibility, not every job in the Army is combat related," he said.

In an effort to boost enlistment, the Army has completely revamped its marketing strategy over the last few years, offering signing bonuses, college tuition, even a program that helps soldiers find a job after they leave the army.

"The Army has a lot of incentives," he said.

Next door at the Marines, however, the marketing approach is a little more hard core.

"We don't try to entice an individual with say, for instance, money, or a specific job. You have to want to be a Marine," said Gomez.

And that was incentive enough for Private First Class Jourdan Coleman.

"I wanted to be a marine. I want to be a marine corps infantry," he said.

Fresh out of boot camp, he's ready for action, and seemingly unafraid of going to war.

"Cause everybody thinks war is still like it was back in the old days, but it's a lot different now. It's a lot safer," said Coleman.

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