The COVID-19 pandemic did nothing to hinder the Army National Guard’s recruiting efforts. The service stated that nearly 43,000 people enlisted in the Guard during fiscal year 2020, which began last Sept. 30 and ended Oct. 1, representing 94 percent of its initial-enlistment goal. Retention during the same time frame was at 101 percent, while the attrition rate stood at 13 percent. Also, more than 4,100 active-Army soldiers transferred to the Guard. In sum, the Guard met its congressionally mandated end strength of 336,000, the service reported.
Enlistments were at a record pace in February, only to come to a complete stop when the pandemic hit. By June, though, the flow of new recruits started picking up again.