7-9 July 2020
Air Force CyberWorx supported a cadet-led project at the U.S. Air Force Academy (USAFA) to identify opportunities to foster inter-connectedness, expand cadet engagement opportunities with support organizations, and increase the mental health of cadets at USAFA.
USAFA is a premier higher-education and officer training establishment that challenges cadets with rigorous physical, military training, and academic activities to build the military leaders of tomorrow. Already a high-pressure environment, rapid shifts during the Coronavirus pandemic in programs and daily life have further challenged building cohesiveness, community, and esprit de corps. These circumstances underscore the need for mental health resources and a robust support system for cadets.
A group of cadets self-formed and are leading the #USAFAStrong initiative as a summer research project with support from USAFA Senior Leadership and AF CyberWorx. The cadets examined many aspects of connection and mental health building including peer support groups, enabling technologies, and integration with existing support and services. AF CyberWorx assisted the cadets through a human-centered design approach to ensure the problem was fully understood and resulting solutions met the needs of all cadets.