Keeping bodies strong and morale high Food, Restaurant & Lodging

The culinary artists of America’s Navy specialize in providing world-class service and hospitality for Enlisted Sailors and Officers everywhere. As a Reservist in the Food, Restaurant & Lodging field, your hands-on efforts, organization skills and exceptional people skills will keep the spirits of your fellow Sailors high. Even as you elevate your own professional credentials.

Job Description

As a member of the Navy Food, Restaurant & Lodging community, you’ll help define the quality of everyday life for your fellow servicemembers – from the dining experience to the living arrangements. At the same time, you’ll have the opportunity to gain experience far beyond what’s typical in the hospitality and food service industry. Here you may:

  • Prepare meals for notable foreign dignitaries and other distinguished guests
  • Manage shore-based motel- and hotel-type quarters for servicemembers
  • Serve as a culinary specialist on an Admiral’s staff or for the Commanding Officer at a shore station

Whatever the specifics, your duties will be carried out during your scheduled drilling and training periods. Take a moment to learn more about the general roles and responsibilities of Reservists. And know this: The impact of your work and your service will go far beyond the time that you put in.

Specific Responsibilities

If you have a taste for the culinary arts, along with excellent organizational and people skills, you’ll find rewarding training as a Reservist in the Food, Restaurant & Lodging community of America’s Navy. As part of this occupational specialty, you could:

  • Prepare menus and keep records and financial budgets for food supplies
  • Operate kitchen and dining facilities (also known as galleys)
  • Operate and manage living quarters on shore


Most of what you do in the Navy Reserve is considered training. The basic Navy Reserve commitment involves training a minimum of one weekend a month (referred to as drilling) and two weeks a year (referred to as Annual Training) – or the equivalent of that.

Food, Restaurant & Lodging professionals in the Navy Reserve serve in an Enlisted role. Before receiving the ongoing professional training that comes with the job, initial training requirements must be met.

For current or former Enlisted military servicemembers: Prior experience satisfies the initial Recruit Training requirement – so you will not need to go through Boot Camp again.

For those without prior military experience: You will need to meet the initial Recruit Training requirement by attending Boot Camp for seven to nine weeks in Great Lakes, IL. This training course will prepare you for service in the Navy Reserve and count as your first Annual Training.

However you start out, your position within the Navy Food, Restaurant & Lodging community will provide hands-on training in areas such as culinary arts, nutrition, teamwork, dining and entertainment services.

Career Advantages

Your training as a Reservist in the Navy Food, Restaurant & Lodging community will provide you with experience you can take with you anywhere you go. It may also prepare you to be, or enhance your current career as, a:

  • Restaurant manager or owner
  • Hotel or nightclub manager
  • Chef
  • Caterer
  • Cook
  • Banquet planner
  • Lodging facilities manager

In addition, some of your formal and on-the-job training will transfer as college credit hours. What’s more, you could potentially get full tuition for college – plus money for books and living expenses – through the Post-9/11 GI Bill.

Your specialized training in the Navy Reserve could prepare you for credentialing, certification and/or licensure opportunities from a number of national boards and organizations. Allowing you to become even more competitive in your challenging field.

And the more tangible benefits? Competitive pay. Points earned toward retirement benefits. Outstanding insurance options. And much more. Read about benefits of serving in the Navy Reserve.


General qualifications may vary depending upon whether you’re currently serving, whether you’ve served before or whether you’ve never served before.

Note that no college degree is required to join the Navy Food, Restaurant & Lodging community. For Reservists, prior related experience is valuable but not necessary. However, the community does look for individuals who are responsible, creative and detail-oriented.

More Information

Want to explore further? Learn what you need to know about joining the Navy Reserve. Find us on Facebook to interact with actual Navy Reservists. Or, if you need more information, contact a Navy Reserve Recruiter.

Consider Your Service Options.

There are different ways that you can commit to serve in America’s Navy. Besides part-time opportunities in the Navy Reserve, full-time Active Duty positions are also available in this career area.