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  • How can I track the status of my application?
    An official member of the FSG team will contact you directly once your application is evaluated to provide a decision notice.
  • I am interested in joining, how do I apply?
    Thank you for reaching out to the Florida State Guard (FSG) regarding our recruitment process. With a heritage dating back to WWII, the FSG was reactivated in 2022 as a state-supported volunteer force providing rapid response humanitarian aid during natural and manmade disasters. The FSG is committed to serving Florida families in times of need—anytime, anywhere. Our all-volunteer force participates in an initial entry training program, quarterly drill periods, and annual training to develop and reinforce the skills necessary to sustain year-round ground, maritime, and aviation emergency response capabilities. Courses of instruction focus on basic medical care, route clearance, search and rescue, land navigation, wildfire management, and other emergency response skills. We launched our new application cycle on March 5th, 2024. If you are interested in applying, please visit our application portal, available here. Due to the continued support and interest from Floridians, as well as statutorily mandated personnel capacity, the application process is highly competitive. Please allow our team 2-3 months to review your application and provide a status update. We appreciate your continued enthusiasm and look forward to reviewing your future application.
  • What are the basic eligibility requirements?
    All Soldiers must meet the following requirements and guidelines: Be a US citizen and Florida resident. Be between the ages of 18 and 60. Clear initial, and continued, background checks and full-panel urinalysis drug screenings. Complete fingerprinting at a FDLE site. Be in general good health with no debilitating or hindering pre-existing medical conditions. Meet and maintain all physical fitness requirements. Adhere to all other requirements and guidelines as provided by FSG authorities.
  • How can I ensure my application is competitive?
    Due to the limited number of positions available, the application and selection process is highly competitive. To submit a strong application, all prospective applicants are encouraged to review the preferred qualifications below: Be between the ages of 18-40. Hold industry-recognized certifications in health care, law enforcement, emergency response, emergency management, first response, aviation operations, maritime operations, and public safety. Professional experience in health care, law enforcement, emergency response, emergency management, first response, aviation operations, maritime operations, military, and public safety. Bilingual.
  • Who will be my official point of contact throughout the application process?
    To assist you throughout the application process, our team will assign each applicant a knowledgeable recruiter to work with you directly. Please allow our recruiting team approximately 2-3 months to contact you following your application submission.
  • What is the application process timeline?
    During regular application periods, the application is divided into the four phases listed below: 1. Applicant Interested candidates submit applications. A member of our team reviews each application and invites eligible and competitive applicants to an interview. 2. Recruit Selected recruits complete a Submission Packet and provide the required documents to their recruiter. A member of our team reviews each packet and sends eligible recruits a conditional offer subject to passing background, drug, and medical screenings. 3. Trainee Eligible trainees receive an Initial Entry Training (IET) date and attend a 21-day IET. 4. Soldier Trainees successfully meet and maintain all IET selection and eligibility requirements, submit all required documentation, pass an initial drug screening & background check, and gain medical clearance. FSG assigns responsibility, rank, and unit. Soldiers become eligible for activation.
  • If I receive a deferral, can I reapply?
    We encourage you to compare your application to the eligibility requirements, preferred qualifications, the organization's mission, and physical fitness standards to increase the competitiveness of future applications.
  • I submitted an application last cycle, do I have to reapply?
    Thank you for your continued interest in joining the FSG. To ensure we receive updated records and documentation to reflect our new application cycle, we ask that all interested applicants submit a new application, available here. If you are chosen to move forward in the recruitment and application process, our staff will provide dates as they become available. We look forward to reviewing your application.
  • Does a VA disability preclude someone from service?
    VA disability does not automatically disbar anyone from service with the FSG. However, all members are expected to meet physical fitness standards and perform job-essential tasks. Physical disability is not a bar to membership in the FSG. Appropriate authorities review and approve exceptions for each disability on a case-by-case basis.
  • How do I gain assignments to the varied units?
    Currently, all members of the Florida State Guard must complete IET. Upon successful completion, individuals will be assessed by staff and cadre based on their professional experience, industry-recognized credentials, demonstrated proficiencies, and overall performance at IET. Evaluations will determine assignments to our Crisis Response Battalion, Aviation Response Squadron, Maritime Response Squadron, or Special Missions Company.
  • How long is a contract?
    While the FSG is an all-volunteer service, we ask all members to commit three years of volunteer service. If a member experiences a major change-in-life event where they are no longer able to fulfill their commitment, they must notify their chain of command immediately to receive guidance on the proper resignation process.
  • Will joining affect my VA benefits?
    The FSG is a volunteer service and should not impact your VA benefits. However, all prospective applicants are encouraged to speak with their local Florida Department of Veterans’ Affairs Veteran Service Officer (VSO) to assess potential impacts to individual VA benefits. A list of VSOs is available here.
  • What specialties are available?
    Currently, all members must undergo the standard application and selection process prior to receiving consideration for specialty roles. All prospective applicants must submit an application and the required documents during a standard selection cycle. If the candidate is competitive, they will be invited to participate in IET. Upon successful completion of IET, members will be assessed for placement in our Crisis Response Battalion, Maritime Response Squadron, Aviation Response Squadron, or Special Missions Company based on demonstrated proficiencies, professional experience, and leadership potential. Specific assignments will be based on the needs of a member’s assigned unit.
  • Will I be activated if my part of the state has an emergency?
    We support our members and their families. If your area of residence is impacted by an emergency, notify your chain of command immediately. We will make the appropriate accommodations, whenever able, to ensure you can focus on your family.
  • What benefits or compensation will I receive?
    Members of the FSG may be reimbursed and provided with a stipend for their volunteer service while activated or in training. Amounts may vary based on travel distance, mission, and other training/activation specific details.
  • Do you have regional units?
    To ensure rapid emergency response capabilities, the FSG maintains a statewide organizational structure rather than regional units. This approach enables our members to mobilize anywhere in the state, as quickly as 12 hours following an event.
  • What is the rank structure and promotion process?
    The rank structure is modeled after the Florida Army National Guard’s rank and insignia. We instill drive and ambition in all of our volunteers, encouraging each of them to seek and earn promotions. Promotions are awarded to volunteers based on time in service and leadership evaluations.
  • What happens if I need to leave Florida?
    If a member needs to temporarily leave Florida for professional or personal reasons, they must coordinate with their chain of command to address any necessary training excusals. If an individual permanently relocates outside of the state, they are required to submit an official resignation and turn-in all issued equipment to their chain of command. Failure to return equipment, may lead to financial charges or penalties.
  • How can I become a Commissioned Officer?
    At this time, Officers will be evaluated and commissioned based on prior military and law enforcement experience, civilian educational and leadership experience, FSG evaluations and performance, and professional certifications. Candidates for Officer billets will be interviewed and evaluated by the FSG as positions become available. To become eligible for an Officer billet, an individual must successfully complete Initial Entry Training and be in good standing.
  • Are there any waivers?
    Grooming: The FSG follows the same standards as the Florida National Guard, which adheres to AR 670-1. Waivers may be granted for medical conditions or religious observances, on a case-by-case basis. These waivers are not permanent and must be renewed and submitted prior to each training period. Tattoos/Piercings: Similar to grooming standards, the FSG follows the tattoo and piercing policy outlined in AR 670-1. A summary of these standards is included below. Please note, any body markings, to include tattoos, piercings, branding, or scarring, outside of those permitted by AR 670-1 are unauthorized. 1) One visible tattoo on each hand (including the palm), not to exceed one inch in measurement in all directions; an unlimited number of tattoos between the fingers as long as they are not visible when the fingers are closed; and one ring tattoo on each hand. (2) One tattoo on the back of the neck, not to exceed two inches in measurement in all directions. (3) One tattoo behind each ear, not to exceed one inch in measurement in all directions, not to extend forward of the ear lobe. Age: To remain eligible for membership, all members must be between the ages of 18-60 throughout the duration of their three-year volunteer commitment. Age waivers are not granted, at this time. Physical: As an emergency response agency, all members of the FSG are expected to work in mentally and physically stressful conditions. Members with a performance-limiting injury of chronic medical condition must notify their chain of command as soon as possible. Waivers may be granted on a case-by-case basis.
  • Can I keep my rank if I come from another State Guard/State Defense Force?
    Roles, responsibilities and ranks provided by another state defense force, military branch, law enforcement agency, or comparable emergency response entity will not automatically transfer to the FSG. However, please include these experiences in your personnel documents to submit a competitive application.
  • What are the attire and grooming standards?
    The FSG follows the same standards as the Florida National Guard, which adheres to AR 670-1. Waivers may be granted for medical conditions or religious observances, on a case-by-case basis. These waivers are not permanent and must be renewed and submitted prior to each training period.
  • What are your uniform regulations?
    Under Florida Law, the FSG must adhere to the standards implemented by the Florida National Guard. For uniforms, the FSG follows Army Regulations 670-1. Physical Training uniforms, standard ACUs, and additional equipment will be issued to recruits upon arrival to IET. Additional recommended supplies will be included on the packing list, provided upon invitation to attend Initial Entry Training.
  • Can I consume marijuana, THC, cannabis, and any other marijuana-related substances if I have a prescription?
    The FSG follows the same standards as the Florida National Guard, adhering to AR 600-85, a zero-tolerance policy for illicit drug use, to include recreational and medicinal marijuana use. All prospective, current, and active members must clear initial, and continued, background checks and full-panel urinalysis drug screenings. Testing positive for drug use, may result in the termination of your membership with the FSG.
  • Where is routine training?
    Currently routine training and drill periods are held at Camp Blanding Joint Training Center. However, all members must remain flexible to adjust for potential alternative training locations.
  • Where is IET?
    IET is hosted at Camp Blanding Joint Training Center in Starke, Florida approximately an hour from Jacksonville, Florida.
  • How often is routine training?
    Following successful graduation and completion of all eligibility requirements, recruits may earn the honor of becoming an FSG soldier. As an FSG soldier, you will be expected to participate in quarterly training periods and annual training.
  • What happens if I miss IET, drill, and/or routine training?
    All absences need to be pre-approved by your chain of command. All recruits and soldiers will be expected to maintain training standards at all times, which may include completing missed training at an alternate date.
  • When is IET?
    To ensure mission readiness, we aim to host several IET training dates throughout 2024. If selected, you will receive training dates from your recruiter once they are assigned. Our next planned IET is scheduled for August 24-September 12, 2024.
  • What happens if I am injured during training or active service?
    If you are injured during training or active service, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation. If you are injured during training or active service, you must notify your chain of command immediately.
  • How long is IET?
    During the immersive three-week training regimen, all recruits will eat, sleep, and train at Camp Blanding throughout the entire duration of training.
  • Can I skip IET if I come from another State Guard?
    All members of the FSG must successfully complete the IET program offered by the FSG. While training courses and certificates from other state defense forces may provide an advantage during promotion evaluations, they will not be accepted as a substitute for FSG training.
  • What type of training will be conducted at IET?
    During IET, you will participate in rigorous training focused on disaster and emergency preparation and response. Training activities will include basic medical, survival, and rescue courses along with daily physical fitness. Following the successful completion of all training requirements, you will have the fortitude, resilience, and experience necessary to serve the people of Florida in times of need.
  • What will I need to pack for IET?
    We are always prepared, and we will make sure you are too. Prior to attending IET, you will receive an official packing list from your recruiter. All other necessary equipment will be issued to you at IET.
  • How can I prepare for IET?
    To prepare, we encourage you to begin or continue a routine physical fitness regimen. For helpful exercises, please refer to the resources listed below: Holistic Health and Fitness Drills and Exercises (2020) Army Combat Fitness Test Overview Holistic Health and Fitness Handbook
  • I’d like to solicit my service or product, would FSG be interested in a free demo or purchase?
    Thank you for your interest in supporting the FSG. At this time, we do not have an active solicitation for your services. All applicable procurement processes between the FSG and vendors will be conducted through MyFlorida Marketplace. To review our active solicitations, if available, please visit here. We appreciate your support and wish you the best of luck in your endeavors.
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