COLUMBIA, S.C. — Secretary of the United States Army Mark Esper spent Tuesday at Fort Jackson, speaking to both soldiers and civilians about improvements to basic training and recruitment.
"We've increased the number of recruiters by nearly 800," says Sec. Esper. "We changed our storefronts in cities and towns and in some areas we moved our storefronts. We're pursuing a much greater social media presence."
Sec Esper says they hope to add 2,000 soldiers to the Army every year and want more than 500,000 soldiers by 2028. They believe their "Focus 22 Cities" initiative will help.
"What we're doing is looking at America's largest 22 cities and going back into those major centers of population and going to where the men and women are and talking to them about what a career in the army can look like, and if not a career, a three year hitch," says Sec. Esper. "We will provide you good pay, dental benefits, medical benefits, a 401K. you can get tuition assistance to go to school, you can get bonuses and again we will teach you a trade."
Fort Jackson is the largest of the four basic training installations in the army, graduating 47,000 soldiers a year.