The Army was in the news recently for its decision to allow soldiers to take a three-year sabbatical from Army service. The changes are not open to everyone. Instead, Army will on allow 20 officers – commissioned or warrants -- and 20 enlisted soldiers per calendar year take a sabbatical.
And in order to take the three-year sabbatical by transitioning to Inactive Ready Reserve status, Army soldiers must be pursuing educational options or taking on other personal challenges. This sabbatical, called the Career Intermission Pilot Program, is open to the U.S. Army and the United States Army Reserve Active Guard/Reserve personnel.
Army officials wanted to make it perfectly clear that this change is a way for the U.S. Army to retain top soldiers. “We are not opening this to just anyone; this is a retention program,” said Albert Eggerton, deputy chief of the Officer Division for Army G-1.
While looking to explain the new Army sabbatical further, Eggerton said, “What we are looking for in this program this is to incentivize people who are able, well qualified, show potential for increased responsibility. … We are trying to get those folks -- who also have challenges in personal life and professional development that can’t be met by the Army -- to take a step back, go and achieve these things and come back to us.”
According to reports, "Currently, there are only six soldiers participating in the program, two officers and four enlisted members."
Of those, two Army soldiers reported using the Career Intermission Pilot Program to further their education. Another, is using the 3-years to spend time with her daughter, while also finishing college, before returning to the Army.
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