Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Author Matthew Weiss examines declining military recruitment among Gen Z, and proposes intelligent solutions rooted in firsthand experience

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Second Lieutenant Matthew Weiss, a Signals Intelligence/Electronic Warfare Officer in the United States Marine Corps, has released “We Don’t Want You, Uncle Sam: Examining the Military Recruiting Crisis with Generation Z,” a thought-provoking book that tackles an under-acknowledged issue facing American national security: the drastic decline in military recruitment among young people. 

Recruitment numbers have been declining for years, but few viable solutions have been proposed by military leaders or members of Congress. A member of Generation Z himself, Weiss saw the recruitment process firsthand, and recognized the ways traditional methods aren’t keeping up with changing times.

 Before joining the Marine Corps, Weiss earned a B.S. and MBA from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, and gained valuable expertise working at a cutting-edge defense technology company. The book draws on personal experience and a broad understanding of the topic, from Gen Z’s most salient social issues to misconceptions that prevent the old guard from adapting recruitment strategies.

Weiss deftly explains the severity of dwindling recruitment and the future difficulties it poses for the United States, as well as the generational feelings contributing to disinterest in military service. The author’s unique position as a member of Gen Z (with younger siblings that keep him further informed about youth culture), an active Marine, and a Wharton MBA provide him with multifaceted insight into the shortcomings of current recruitment strategies, and he uses this knowledge to propose robust solutions.

Addressing common attitudes held by Gen Z, strategic implementation of modernized recruitment initiatives, and the disconnect between present-day military messaging and Zoomers, Weiss uses both macro analysis and candid personal experiences to present an urgent call to action. Weiss’s writing is, first and foremost, an appeal to decision-makers to adopt new strategies before the ongoing recruitment crisis gets worse.

Beyond providing guidance to military recruitment leadership, We Don’t Want You, Uncle Sam is also a fascinating examination of the vital role of the military in society, the misunderstood value system of Gen Z, and pressing concerns surrounding national defense.

Second Lieutenant Weiss cares deeply about this issue of service, crafting his experiences and wisdom into detailed a plan for resolving it. The author’s passion for this issue is palpable, and his commitment to creating solutions shines through on each page. The book is eye-opening and inspiring for anyone interested in military affairs, working in DoD, or considering military service.

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