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Army recruitment offices reopening in southern Colorado

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U.S. Army Paratroopers deploy from Pope Army Airfield, North Carolina., Photo Date: 1/1/2020

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- Army recruitment offices across southern Colorado are reopening after months of being shutdown by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Recruitment officials in southern Colorado say they did take a hard hit at the height of the pandemic and are about 15% behind where they'd like to be at this point in the year.

But now the nationwide job lay-offs have people interested in enlisting more than ever. 

Just this past month, recruitment offices in southern Colorado collectively enlisted 33 people into the army which puts them right on par with where they've been in years past. 

But the enlisting process itself looks different than ever before.  

"Before [new recruits] leave to [basic training], we make sure they go through a two week quarantine period, so where they're not able to come into contact with anyone who may potentially have it." said Captain Josh E. Trenkel with the U.S. Army. "The last thing we want to do is introduce [COVID-19] to an entire class of basic training attendees." 

Though the integration to this "new normal" has things moving slower, Trenkel says the desire of people to join really hasn't let up. 

"A lot of people are really eager to get out there and find some employment opportunities," said Trenkel. "Obviously we're aware of the unemployment numbers in Colorado; the most important thing we need to be asking on our end of it is, 'how can we help in those kinds of situations?'" 

Local recruiters are busy answering to the demand for job security.  

At the end of June they'll be part of a nationwide 3-day initiative to recruit 10,000 people into the army.

New recruits are still sent out to basic training. 

However, all active duty military are under a mandatory "stop move" which drastically limits their travel. 

Colorado Springs / Local News / Military

Mia Villanueva

Mia is a weekday reporter for Good Morning Colorado. Learn more about Mia here.