NASW partnering with Selective Service System to ensure youth do not miss opportunities

Photo courtesy of Selective Services Administration.

Photo courtesy of Selective Service System.

Did you know millions of young men miss out on important opportunities because they fail to register for the Selective Service?

The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) has partnered with the Selective Service System to help inform young men — and especially at-risk young men — of the requirement to register with Selective Service when they turn 18.

NASW is working with Selective Service, an independent Federal agency that is NOT associated in any way with military recruiting, to spread this message and to ensure that young men, particularly those at risk, are not prevented from accessing resources that can help them to succeed in the future.

Although you may be aware of the registration requirement, what you may not know is that if a young man reaches age 26 without registering, he can be PERMANENTLY barred from:

  • Receiving federal student loans for college, as well as other college opportunities on the state level;
  • Participating in federally funded job training programs, along with many similar state- and locally-run efforts;
  • Working for the Federal government, as well as for many state and local agencies like such as the police, fire or EMT;
  • Receiving or renewing a driver’s license in most states;and/or
  • Face serious delays in citizenship (this applies to male immigrants who ultimately wish to become citizens).

Social workers across the country play critical roles in the lives of young men across many systems, programs and communities. Therefore, NASW, in partnership with Selective Service, is seeking approximately 12 NASW members to serve in an advisory role to help create an online toolkit of materials to social workers to effectively communicate the risks of not registering will the Selective Service. Advisory group members would only require a four- to eight-hour long total commitment to recommend and discuss outreach materials with over email, phone and potentially a short, in-person meeting.

If you are interested or would like further information, please contact Shelby Krick at (202) 525-1945 or


  1. Great idea that should be taken to the next level, partnering with the military as well. A recent Army study published in the WSJ reported that 73% of men in the 17-34 year old age group do not meet basic criteria for military service. The reports cited problems with obesity, felony convictions, drug and alcohol problems and inability to pass the entry exam. This does not take into account other branches of the armed forces with higher entry standards. This illustrates what challenges lie ahead for providers of social services. Insuring that clients are able to work to meet requirements for this civic obligation. What great way to build the next generation of those willing and able to serve. In doing so all will be able to share the burden of freedom in the world.

  2. Thank you for the helpful information in this article. It’s terrific that NASW is partnering with the Selective Service to help young men enroll.

    The article has prompted me to discuss Selective Service enrollment with several young men. Way to go, NASW!

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