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Guaranteed National Guard Admission Program

SUNY Potsdam and the New York National Guard have joined forces to offer a mutually beneficial recruitment program that allows prospective students/soldiers the ability to enlist in the Army National Guard and be guaranteed admission into SUNY Potsdam upon completion of their initial entry training.

This is the answer to that familiar question for high school students: Military or college? Our answer is, why not both? Now you can join the National Guard and receive guaranteed admission to SUNY Potsdam.

Both the National Guard and SUNY Potsdam are recruiting prospective soldiers/students who are contemplating their next big move. Often, they are thinking in an “either/or” mode. This gives you a "both/and" option instead! SUNY Potsdam is a proud supporter of military affiliated students, and we know from experience that National Guard soldiers make great students. SUNY Potsdam offers military affiliated students numerous benefits such as priority class registration, in-state tuition rates, free parking and printing, as well as a designated Military/Veteran's Lounge. The New York National Guard offers attractive benefits such as a $20,000 signing bonus for critical career fields, free tuition through the Recruitment Incentive Retention Program, health insurance, and unparalleled job training and skill development.

Detailed Concept
New York National Guard recruiters can offer an enlistment incentive that affords a soldier who has completed their initial entry training guaranteed admission to SUNY Potsdam in the immediate semester following their return from training. SUNY Potsdam will allow admission consideration for students with a high school GPA of 2.5 (or 79) and higher. SUNY Potsdam will coordinate with the National Guard recruiters to provide individualized support directly to and for the student, allowing for a seamless transition 
through the combined efforts of the Military/Veterans Services Coordinator and the SUNY Potsdam Admissions Office. Each prospective student/soldier will have a packet reviewed and will have a conditional guaranteed admission prior to contracting with the National Guard. Each soldier/student will receive their guaranteed admission upon completion of their initial entry training. They will then receive more individualized advising in areas such as financial aid, veteran benefits, academic advising, and of course be scheduled for an Orientation session. SUNY Potsdam will connect these soldier/students with all available and appropriate support programs.

Financial Considerations
Paying for college is always a significant consideration for both prospective students and their families. The New York National Guard is a great place to begin a career to serve others, and now with this new program, you can get accepted to SUNY Potsdam and get your degree in one or more of our high quality academic programs. The existing 
Recruitment Incentive Retention Program provides students/soldiers with funding for their tuition. At SUNY Potsdam, this benefit is worth approximately $3,535 every semester. Other financial benefits available include an additional $385 per month through the VA Montgomery GI Bill-Select Reserve (MGIB-SR) if the soldier/student enlists with a six-year contract. The National Guard also offers a $20,000 signing bonus for critical career fields. SUNY Potsdam students can also participate through cross-registration free of charge in the Clarkson University Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) Program. If the fully qualified soldier contracts with ROTC, they will be eligible for an additional $420 per month. This option places you on a career path to become an officer in either the U.S. Army, Army Reserve or Army National Guard.

Here is a checklist of what is needed for the guaranteed admission:

  • SUNY or Common Application
  • High school transcript
  • Personal essay
  • A letter of recommendation
  • A National Guard enlistment contract in either the Air or Army National Guard.
  • A DD-214 indicating completion of initial entry training, basic and advanced individual training to be fully qualified.

Other items required:

  • FAFSA submission, for calculating other financial aid you could be eligible for.
  • Joint Services Transcript (JST), to award additional college credits for training received.
  • VA Chapter 1606 (Montgomery GI Bill - Selected Reserves (MGIB-SR), available with a six-year enlistment contract.