Living the student lifestyle and having a taste of military life is why the Army Reserves is a perfect balance for Private (PTE) Harry Lloyd.
A quantity surveying student at Otago Polytechnic in Dunedin, PTE Lloyd, aged 20, joined in 2018 straight out of high school having always had an interest and admiration for the military.
He is a soldier in Bravo Company, 2nd/4th Battalion, Royal New Zealand Infantry Regiment (RNIZR), based in Dunedin.
PTE Lloyd said the reserve life was perfect for him because he wanted to be able to help others.
“Civil Defence is currently our most likely operational deployment, and when things turn upside down being able to be a part of a team that can do their part is something I hold highly about this job.”
He said a highlight of his Army Reserve career so far was basic training and was the best seven weeks of his life.
“Basic training was an outstanding experience. I would recommend that everyone takes to step outside of their comfort zone. The people you meet, the experiences you have and the skills you learn and pick up are second to none.
“I love being surrounded by my mates, whether it is in the snow freezing cold, or busting up a hill with my pack on. It’s all worth it,” said PTE Lloyd.
He was lucky enough to be attached to Regular Force unit 2nd/1st Battalion, RNIZR late last year on Exercise Veiliuaki in Fiji.
“I was attached to 2/1 RNZIR for about a month, and as part of that we did a 12-day close country tactical exercise in Fiji. Being able to fly over in a C-130 Hercules was a bit of a novelty too.
“There are always opportunities that pop up. When it works out there’s nothing more I can recommend,” PTE Lloyd said.
PTE Lloyd said if someone was considering joining the Reserves to “just do it”.
“No matter what stage of life you are in it doesn’t matter. When I did basic training we have some older people as well as younger. All ages joined.
“Imagine getting paid to get fit, spend time outdoors, learn different weapon systems and meet amazing people. I think that’s all that needs to be said.”
The New Zealand Army Reserve is a valued and skilled part of the New Zealand Army. It is a part-time component and essential in supporting New Zealand’s modern, agile and highly adaptive light combat force.
To learn more about joining the New Zealand Army Reserves visit the Defence Careers website here.