STEM Beginning in 2018, the MAARNG became the lead agency responsible for Urban Search and Rescue within the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Additionally, the MAARNG has multiple Explosive Ordnance Disposal teams that partner with bomb squads and in-state law enforcement agencies. These missions have resulted in an acute need for talented and technically-minded young people to man their formations.

The MAARNG has historically collaborated with educational institutions to attract high-quality applicants to their organization, including SkillsUSA (SUSA), which is an organization that provides educational programs, events and competitions that support career and technical education (CTE) in the nation’s classrooms. Working with SUSA and Pitsco Education, the MAARNG became aware of an opportunity to assist schools with robotics education and competitions for urban search and rescue.

The MAARNG has deployed trailers featuring TETRIX robotics sets and obstacle courses across the Commonwealth to facilitate robotics competitions. The organization can also provide a comprehensive full day of instruction or a tailored solution based on the needs of the school. Instructors have noted that working the MAARNG has “made the event even better for students and staff.” Most importantly, students are exposed to the National Guard and its mission to serve both Country and Commonwealth.

The MAARNG RRB Commander, LTC Eric J. Dinoto, notes “I was born and raised here in Massachusetts and have two great kids attending our local high school, so to say that I am invested in enhancing our children’s education is an understatement...” He is currently coordinating with the Homeland Security Institute to certify the course so that students can utilize their experience in college applications for Massachusetts state schools. The next innovation of the program includes a Cyber element where students will be exposed to programming and defensive operations. LTC Dinoto is prepared to share details of this SEV program from contracting through execution with other States and Territories as a best practice for attracting talent.

Check it out in The Pitsco Network