Supporting Utah’s Servicemembers

Guard.tuitionOne of the ways the State of Utah supports our service men and women is through the National Guard’s tuition assistance program. With approximately 560 soldiers participating, it’s important to effectively manage the program without detracting from the Guard’s critical day-to-day operations. In addition, a well-run tuition assistance program is a key recruitment incentive for Utah’s National Guard soldiers and airmen. In fact, the Guard’s tuition assistance program is a key factor for Utah’s first place national recruitment ranking.

By applying the concepts and tools of the SUCCESS Framework, the average time a recruiter spent on each tuition assistance application fell from 15-23 minutes to 5 minutes representing a 66-79% improvement. The related cost per hour of service fell from $39.82 to $15.24. In addition, system improvements now mean that the availability of funds is updated in near real-time, resulting in less guess work about the availability of funds and fewer program interruptions and delays due to a lack of funding.

Beginning in January 2014, an additional aspect of the Guard’s tuition assistance improvement strategy will allow military personnel to access information without the existing time intensive data entry process. Once in place, the time spent on the application process should further decrease to 1-2 minutes which will translate to a 94-96% improvement and a cost per hour of service of approximately $5. These improvements will result in a program that is much more timely and responsive for participants.

Thanks to Colonel Chrisine Burckle and members of her team for their work to improve the National Guard’s tuition reimbursement system. By offering an effective and efficient tuition assistance program in support of the educational goals of our soldiers and airmen, the State of Utah is able to pay-it-forward to those who so valiantly serve our state and nation.

*Participant Picture Details: Front Row: Ms. Claire Gee, Ms. Sheila Taulbee, Col Christine Burckle; Back Row: MSgt Mario Reeve, SMSgt Wayne Ormond, Mr. Chad Whitlock, Sgt Kraig Edde, Mr. Mike Norton; Not Pictured: Major Kendall Workman and Sergeant First Class Shawn Pullin