Army launches new campaign to draw more soldiers to Alaska

Published: Feb. 28, 2021 at 7:50 PM AKST
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (KTUU) -Alaska offers some of the harshest environments during winter in which to train. It’s not for everyone.

“There’s natural angst that comes with Alaska,” said Major General Peter Andrysiak, the commanding officer of Army Alaska.

But it’s not all bad. “Alaska is a phenomenal place to live,” Andrysiak said.

That’s the message he wants to spread to current and future soldiers. The Army has launched a new recruiting campaign that targets those who want to live and work in the 49th State.

“What you ideally recruit is more of those who come from northern states, and even Alaska. I think there’s a bonus there,” said Andrysiak.

The new campaign also targets those from warmer climates.

Previously a soldier could only request assignment in Alaska after he or she completed basic training. Now they can do it as soon as they enter the recruiter’s office.

“That’s good for us because we’re trying to build soldiers that have some of these skills,” said Andrysiak. “That’s a key component of what we’re doing. They’re more apt to thrive.”

The key to that is improving the quality of life for the soldiers, including more pay. Training is another part of improving the quality of life for the troops. General Andrysiak wants more of it held in state so the soldiers are closer to their families.

“If we’re going to ask soldiers and families to live here and endure some of the challenging winters, we’re looking at opportunities for how to improve that,” Andrysiak said.

Alaska used to be assignment of choice. General Andrysiak is working to make that happen again.

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