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States with the highest rates of military enlistment

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BPTU // Shutterstock

States with the highest rates of military enlistment

Roughly 1.35 million Americans serve in the United States Armed Forces, down from 2.24 million in 1989, according to data from the World Bank. Enlistment rates, however, are by no means uniform across the country.

Using data from the Center for Naval Analyses (CNA), a defense research and analysis organization, Stacker ranked all 50 states and the District of Columbia in terms of military enlistment rates. States are ranked by a representation ratio, which looks at the number of recruits as a share of a state’s population of 18 to 24 year olds. A ranking of 1 is exactly neutral, implying that the state’s share of recruits is equal to its share of America's population in the 18- to 24-year-old demographic. The total number of enlistees is also noted, and all data is taken from 2016 recruitment numbers. Southern, western, and southwestern states dominate the overrepresented side of the list while states in the northeast are more likely to be underrepresented.

Read on to find out how your state measures up in terms of American military enlistment.

ALSO: States sending the most young people to the military

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Master Sgt. Craig Clapper // Air National Guard

#51. District of Columbia

Representation ratio: 0.29 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 99

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SMSgt David H. Lipp // Air National Guard

#50. North Dakota

Representation ratio: 0.53 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 203

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Senior Master Sgt. Julie Avey // Air National Guard

#49. Massachusetts

Representation ratio: 0.57 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 1,913

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2nd Class Shane Arrington // Army National Guard

#48. Rhode Island

Representation ratio: 0.58 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 316

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United States Navy // Wikimedia Commons

#47. New York

Representation ratio: 0.65 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 6,378

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TSgt. Jeremy Giacoletto-Stegall // USAF

#46. Utah

Representation ratio: 0.69 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 1,051

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US Army // Wikimedia Commons

#45. Iowa

Representation ratio: 0.7 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 996

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Capt. Nathan T. Wallin // DOD

#44. Minnesota

Representation ratio: 0.71 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 1,609

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Sgt. 1st Class Mark Bell // US Army Reserve

#43. New Jersey

Representation ratio: 0.71 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 2,901

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Master Sgt. Rob Trubia // USAF

#42. Vermont

Representation ratio: 0.71 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 184

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Unknown // Wisconsin Department of Military Affairs

#41. Wisconsin

Representation ratio: 0.75 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 2,033

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Master Sgt. Culeen Shaffer // USAF

#40. Pennsylvania

Representation ratio: 0.79 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 4,924

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The National Guard // Wikimedia Commons

#39. Nebraska

Representation ratio: 0.8 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 766

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Staff Sgt. Thomas Vega // Michigan National Guard

#38. Michigan

Representation ratio: 0.81 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 3,800

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The National Guard // Wikimedia Commons

#37. Connecticut

Representation ratio: 0.83 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 1,347

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Staff Sgt. Lealan Buehrer // USAF

#36. Illinois

Representation ratio: 0.83 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 5,261

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The National Guard // Flickr

#35. South Dakota

Representation ratio: 0.84 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 318

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Staff Sgt. Scott Raymond // Kentucky National Guard

#34. Kentucky

Representation ratio: 0.86 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 1,750

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Staff Sgt. Alicia R. Leaders // USMC

#33. California

Representation ratio: 0.88 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 17,729

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Army Cyber // Wikimedia Commons

#32. Louisiana

Representation ratio: 0.88 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 2,099

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US Army

#31. Kansas

Representation ratio: 0.9 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 1,202

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The National Guard // Flickr

#30. West Virginia

Representation ratio: 0.91 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 767

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John Turner // USAF

#29. Montana

Representation ratio: 0.93 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 454

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Kemberly Groue // USAF

#28. Mississippi

Representation ratio: 0.95 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 1,428

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STAFF SGT. RUSSELL LEE KLIKA // Wikimedia Commons

#27. Indiana

Representation ratio: 0.98 — underrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 2,922

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Unknown // USAF

#26. Delaware

Representation ratio: 1 — equally represented
Total number of enlistees: 372

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3rd Class Taylor DiMartino // Navy Live

#25. Maryland

Representation ratio: 1.05 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 2,841

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The National Guard // Flickr

#24. New Hampshire

Representation ratio: 1.05 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 624

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Sgt. Andrew Kuhn // DOD

#23. Ohio

Representation ratio: 1.06 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 5,368

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Staff Sgt. Jon McCallum // afrc.af.mil

#22. Tennessee

Representation ratio: 1.06 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 3,239

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Airman 1st Class Renishia Richardson // USAF

#21. Idaho

Representation ratio: 1.08 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 876

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Dennis Carlson // USAF

#20. New Mexico

Representation ratio: 1.09 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 1,058

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Airman 1st Class Luke W. Nowakowski // USAF

#19. Wyoming

Representation ratio: 1.09 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 278

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Master Sgt. Michel Sauret // Wikimedia Commons

#18. Arkansas

Representation ratio: 1.11 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 1,370

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The National Guard // Flickr

#17. Maine

Representation ratio: 1.11 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 562

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Cpl. Justin Updegraff // USMC

#16. North Carolina

Representation ratio: 1.11 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 5,453

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The National Guard // Flickr

#15. Oklahoma

Representation ratio: 1.11 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 1,977

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Oregon National Guard // Flickr

#14. Oregon

Representation ratio: 1.11 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 1,928

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Sgt. 1st Class Jason Kriess // Wikimedia Commons

#13. Washington

Representation ratio: 1.14 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 3,347

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Tech. Sgt. Traci Howells // Air National Guard

#12. Missouri

Representation ratio: 1.17 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 2,948

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Benjamin Faske // USAF

#11. Texas

Representation ratio: 1.2 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 16,139

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Senior Master Sgt. Ken Johnson // USAF

#10. Alabama

Representation ratio: 1.24 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 2,915

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Capt. Virginia Lang // USAF DOD

#9. Alaska

Representation ratio: 1.26 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 460

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Sgt. Christopher O’Quin // USMC

#8. Hawaii

Representation ratio: 1.28 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 892

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Tech. Sgt. Jared Marquis // USAF

#7. Colorado

Representation ratio: 1.29 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 2,774

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Arizona National Guard // Flickr

#6. Arizona

Representation ratio: 1.31 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 3,947

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Senior Airman Joshua Kleinholz // USAF

#5. Nevada

Representation ratio: 1.31 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 1,614

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Ashley Calingo // doncino.navy.mil

#4. Virginia

Representation ratio: 1.37 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 4,900

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SC National Guard // Flickr

#3. South Carolina

Representation ratio: 1.42 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 3,014

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2nd Class Marcus L. Stanley // USN

#2. Florida

Representation ratio: 1.43 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 11,552

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GA National Guard // Flickr

#1. Georgia

Representation ratio: 1.50 — overrepresented
Total number of enlistees: 6,758

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