A Year in the Guard with Spc. Sow: Taking His Career to New Heights

Soldiers tend to learn a lot about themselves in the first few years of service. It is not uncommon for some to take a different path in their military career. That was the case for Spc. Ousmane Sow, a wheeled vehicle mechanic with the 34th Military Police Company who originally hails from Guinea-Conakry in Africa. 

He joined the Minnesota National Guard to inspire others in his community, and to show them what the military has to offer. 

“Friends asked me about the Army not knowing about part-time service, but I explained to them the difference between full and part-time, pros and cons based on my understanding before they get themselves in something they didn’t want,” Sow said. 

When he’s not serving, Sow works as a cell tower climber and inspector. He counts soccer and airplanes among his hobbies, so it’s not surprising he was recently selected by a warrant officer board to become an Army aviator. 

2023 will certainly be a busy year for Sow as he prepares for Warrant Officer Candidate School and eventually Warrant Officer Flight Training.  

“Something I learned in the past three years in the Guard is that everything is possible if you set yourself right; you can be whatever you want to be in life with goals and networking,” he said. 

That is why Sow wouldn’t hold back if someone asked him whether they should join the Minnesota National Guard. 

“I will ask them the reason why they want to join; if it’s money I’ll tell them not to join. However, if they are considering joining for a life experience, school benefits, leadership, etc. Then I will tell them to join and wish them good luck.” 

Sgt. Bob Brown 

Minnesota National Guard Public Affairs 

Editor’s note: To gain full insight into how a year of service in the Minnesota National Guard looks, the Minnesota National Guard Public Affairs team will be sharing the experiences of four service members periodically throughout 2023, all of whom are at different stages of their careers. For Sow, his journey will focus on exploring the transitions into the career path of warrant officer and a new career field in aviation.