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National Guard partners with ASURE for students’ recruitment solutions

Current graduate student Grant Navakuku poses for a portrait at the Tempe Fine Arts Center on Oct. 30, 2018. Navakuku is part of the Public Service Academy, ASU ROTC and the Arizona National Guard.

August 14, 2020

ASURE is looking for students’ innovative solutions for the Arizona National Guard to increase brand awareness and recruit top talent.

The Arizona National Guard hopes to tap the knowledge and creativity of Arizona undergraduate and graduate students by sponsoring ASURE’s Innovation Challenge, which recently opened for proposals.

Student teams – with support from a faculty mentor – will conduct research and identify solutions that increase awareness of the guard’s career opportunities and its mission to recruit talented men and women to the Arizona National Guard.

“I am very excited to see our state’s students develop innovative solutions to our recruiting challenges and help our National Guard, state and nation,” Arizona National Guard Brig. Gen. Troy Tupper Daniels said.

The solutions can be technical, such as creating an app or a software application that improves the recruiting process, or nontechnical, such as developing a marketing campaign that targets specific demographics and helps the guard to communicate more effectively, said Claudia ElDib, program manager for ASURE.

The teams will need to collect and analyze data about the Arizona National Guard’s current target audiences and evaluate existing recruiting methods to develop their solutions, she said.

The winning team’s solution may be used by the Arizona National Guard, or further developed for commercial and government purposes. The winners will win a weeklong trip to Washington, D.C., to meet U.S. Army inspector general staff and tour national monuments.

Proposals will be accepted until Sept. 23. The finalists will be announced on Sept. 28, and those teams will receive funding to implement their proposed solutions. The finalists will demonstrate their solutions on April 21, 2021, and a winning team will be named.

Teams will have the opportunity to participate in video teleconferences with National Guard leadership to obtain additional information and will be assigned a National Guard mentor during the process. Additionally, ASURE staff will provide support during the challenge. 

The Arizona State University-affiliated applied research lab holds Innovation Challenges that are designed to rapidly solve grand challenges with high-impact solutions for local, state and national government agencies and companies. ASURE’s expertise centers on translating ideas into dual-use solutions for technology, engineering, safety and security sectors, meaning they solve for commercial and military problems.