Skip to main content

Main Area

Main

States with the highest rates of military enlistment

  • States with the highest rates of military enlistment

    Roughly 1.35 million Americans serve in the United States Armed Forces, down from 2.24 million in 1989, according to data from the World Bank. Enlistment rates, however, are by no means uniform across the country.

    Using data from the Center for Naval Analyses (CNA), a defense research and analysis organization, Stacker ranked all 50 states and the District of Columbia in terms of military enlistment rates. States are ranked by a representation ratio, which looks at the number of recruits as a share of a state’s population of 18 to 24 year olds. A ranking of 1 is exactly neutral, implying that the state’s share of recruits is equal to its share of America's population in the 18- to 24-year-old demographic. The total number of enlistees is also noted, and all data is taken from 2016 recruitment numbers. Southern, western, and southwestern states dominate the overrepresented side of the list while states in the northeast are more likely to be underrepresented.

    Read on to find out how your state measures up in terms of American military enlistment.

    ALSO: States sending the most young people to the military

  • #51. District of Columbia

    Representation ratio: 0.29 — underrepresented
    Total number of enlistees: 99

  • #50. North Dakota

    Representation ratio: 0.53 — underrepresented
    Total number of enlistees: 203

  • #49. Massachusetts

    Representation ratio: 0.57 — underrepresented
    Total number of enlistees: 1,913

  • #48. Rhode Island

    Representation ratio: 0.58 — underrepresented
    Total number of enlistees: 316

  • #47. New York

    Representation ratio: 0.65 — underrepresented
    Total number of enlistees: 6,378

  • #46. Utah

    Representation ratio: 0.69 — underrepresented
    Total number of enlistees: 1,051

  • #45. Iowa

    Representation ratio: 0.7 — underrepresented
    Total number of enlistees: 996

  • #44. Minnesota

    Representation ratio: 0.71 — underrepresented
    Total number of enlistees: 1,609

  • #43. New Jersey

    Representation ratio: 0.71 — underrepresented
    Total number of enlistees: 2,901

  • #42. Vermont

    Representation ratio: 0.71 — underrepresented
    Total number of enlistees: 184

2018 All rights reserved.