What Is a Private in the Navy Reserves?

A private in the Navy Reserves is the lowest-ranking position in the Reserve component of the U.S. Navy. New recruits, with no prior experience in the service, normally occupy that position. They are not entitled to wear the insignia, although they receive pay from day one.

If a person hasn't served in the military before, the commitment period ranges between two to eight years. Unless a specialized field chosen by the recruit is limited to specific sites, he is allowed to join the nearest Navy Reserve unit and stay close to home. Recruits start their Navy Reserve careers at the Naval Station Great Lakes boot camp in Lake County, Ill.