SELECTED RESERVE ENLISTED ACCESSIONS AND ENLISTED FORCE
Age. Substantive differences exist among the Reserve Components in the proportion of enlisted members in various age groups, as shown in Table 5.9. The Air Force Reserve Components (ANG and USAFR) have the "oldest" members with 35 and 39 percent, respectively, of enlisted members 40 years of age or older. These proportions are strikingly different from the Active Components and other Reserve Components. For example, only 3 percent of USMCR enlisted members are 40 or older.
Age differences among the Components result from diverse mission requirements and retention. The mission drives the NPS/prior service mix in each of the Reserve Components. For example, the labor-intensive requirements of infantry and other ground combat units usually mandate the need for younger individuals, while equipment-intensive requirements demand more formal training. Normally, longer training periods result in the Services seeking recruits for longer terms of enlistment or maintaining a force with greater experience. Individuals in equipment-intensive or high-technology fields, such as those found more often in the USNR, ANG, and USAFR, usually are more experienced, and therefore older.