In an effort to show potential recruits that just about anybody can be right for the Army, the military branch's esports team has played a huge role in recruitment, showing people that it's possible to be a pro gamer and member of the military at the same time.
According to U.S. Army Sgt. 1st Class Christopher Jones, when the announcement was made about the Army forming a brand new esports team, over 7,000 soldiers wanted to be involved with the project. After an extensive tryout process, 16 team members were chosen to become a part of the team.
Jones went on to explain that this isn't something completely new for the military. Members of the U.S. Army have been playing video games in their free time for years and years, so it only made sense to give them an opportunity to display their skills on a professional level.
Some of us may recall a crazy aunt or relative joking about how video games like Call of Duty were tools for getting young people ready to go to war. Well, in 2019, gaming and the military are certainly connected, although it might not be as exciting as the conspiracy your aunt might have predicted.
At the end of the day, the main focus of the Army's esports team is to connect with every day people who may have an interest in joining the military, but might still be on the fence. By showing young people that many U.S. Army members are gamers too, they hope to encourage interest in serving one's country when people may otherwise feel isolated or intimidated when considering the option.
The world of esports has grown massively over the past couple of years. According to statistic recruiters, over 72% of men and 49% of women from ages 18 to 29 will be gamers in some capacity by 2020. The U.S. Army hopes to capitalize on these statistics, and continue to grow their recruiting methods to reach the likes of every day people.