CAMP LEATHERNECK, Afghanistan -- Active-duty Marines in Afghanistan found the process of re-enlisting into a duty station of their choice or a new military occupation specialty is simple.
The Marine Manpower and Enlisted Assignment team conducted more than 2,800 interviews and approved more than 700 Marines’ reenlistment packages within the three weeks they spent in Helmand province.
“The fiscal year 2011 guidelines are pretty specific,” said Master Gunnery Sgt. Matthew Manieri, the motor transport operations monitor. “We are more selective in quality more-so than we have in the past because of the number crunching we are going to be going through.”
The team of 17 met with enlisted Marines at nine locations, July 4-27, to inform them of re-enlistment opportunities and provide guidance to Marines interested in new duty stations or military occupation speciality.
The priority of the MMEA team’s mission is to help active-duty Marines fill positions of their choice while meeting staffing requirements of the Marine Corps.
Only the most qualified Marines will have the opportunity to re-enlist in their jobs. The remaining will have the opportunity to reenlist in another field or consider discharge from the Marine Corps.
“There are 58 fast-filling jobs, meaning those are jobs that are going to be filled up within the first couple of months,” said Sgt. Maj. Micheal P. Barrett, sergeant major of Regional Command Southwest. “It is a great indicator that the force is healthy. Marines are knocking down doors to re-enlist.”
Barrett said the number of packages submitted has remained high, even as bonuses and incentives are dwindling.
Manieri said Marines visiting their monitors is extremely important. They get face-to-face interaction and can see the options they have while considering re-enlistment in their jobs, choice of duty station or a new job.
“A Marine who visits their monitor while in Afghanistan has the unique opportunity to start his package, walk it through his chain of command and get it approved vice if he was in the rear and was going to re-enlist,” said Gunnery Sgt. Bryant Lodge, career planner with 1st Marine Division. “The package would have to go through headquarters Marine Corps and go through a normal process that takes 2-3 weeks.”
“Marines are able to contact their monitors, not only when they are eligible to move, but when they are interested in moving,” Manieri said.
Sgt. Thomas L. Mattingly, assessments non-commissioned officer from Springfield, Ky., said when time came to submit his re-enlistment package, he knew he wanted to re-enlist. His job had no re-enlistment bonus; however he was interested in a special duty assignment at Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island, S.C.
“Obviously, I didn’t get any push from my command to go see the monitor. This is something I’ve been looking forward to and tracking for some amount of time,” Mattingly said.
Mattingly went to see the MMEA “road show” monitors while they were in Afghanistan. He verified there was a boat space available and sat down with the special duty assignment monitor. He was then locked on with his duty assignment and submitted his reenlistment package.
“The monitors and the career planner helped me out tremendously in helping get that special duty assignment,” Mattingly said. “It was pretty painless. One morning and it was done.”
Mattingly happily re-enlisted, July 29, and every day many more Marines are taking the next step in following their careers.
Marines looking for more information can refer to MarAdmin 331/10 for specific re-enlistment guidance on fiscal year 2011. Marine Corps Order P1040.31J gives guidelines on the re-enlistment process.
Marines can submit for re-enlistment through their unit’s career planner and are able to receive more detailed information regarding the Marine’s specific needs.