12% of recruits in Oct. had lowest acceptable scores
By Tom Bowman
November 8, 2005
WASHINGTON // The number of new recruits who scored at the bottom of the Army's aptitude test tripled last month, Pentagon officials said, helping the nation's largest armed service meet its October recruiting goal but raising concerns about the quality of the force.
Former Army Secretary Thomas E. White said the service was making a mistake by lowering its standards. "I think it's disastrous. You are throwing the towel in on recruiting quality," said White, a retired general whom Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld fired in 2003 over other policy differences.
"We have clear experience from the 1970s with recruiting a sizable number of people from the lowest mental categories," said White. After the Vietnam War, the Army accepted a higher proportion of low-scoring recruits, leading to training and discipline problems, he added.
To achieve last month's recruiting targets, 12 percent of those accepted by the Army had the lowest acceptable results. They scored between 16 and 30 points out of a possible 99 on an aptitude test that quizzes potential soldiers on general science, mathematics and word knowledge.
No more than 4 percent of all recruits can come from that lowest category, according to Pentagon limits. Army officials insisted they would still meet the 4 percent goal - despite the October spike - when numbers are tallied for an entire year. October is the first month of the service's fiscal year, which will end Sept. 30, 2006.
"We're on track to meet our 4 percent annual goal," said Lt. Col. Brian Hilferty, a spokesman for Army personnel. He declined to comment on the 12 percent figure. "It's very early in the year," he said.
The National Guard's October recruit pool included 6 percent from the lowest-scoring category, though Guard officials also said they expected that figure to drop below the 4 percent... [continues]
Cite This Essay
(2005, 11). Army Reaches Its Lowest Counts. StudyMode.com. Retrieved 11, 2005, from http://www.studymode.com/essays/Army-Reaches-Its-Lowest-Counts-69604.html
"Army Reaches Its Lowest Counts" StudyMode.com. 11 2005. 11 2005 <http://www.studymode.com/essays/Army-Reaches-Its-Lowest-Counts-69604.html>.
"Army Reaches Its Lowest Counts." StudyMode.com. 11, 2005. Accessed 11, 2005. http://www.studymode.com/essays/Army-Reaches-Its-Lowest-Counts-69604.html.