Army Experience Center

Thursday August 28, 2008

What is it?

The Army Experience Center (AEC) is a new facility allowing young adults the opportunity to virtually experience many aspects of the Army through hands-on interactive displays and educational technologies. The center utilizes state-of-the-art technologies and simulations to entertain participants while educating them about the Army's many career, training, education and personal growth opportunities.

What has the Army done?

The AEC is the centerpiece of the Army Experience Pilot program designed to test and evaluate new marketing strategies. Located at the Franklin Mills Mall in Philadelphia, the AEC is a 14,500-square-foot educational facility that uses interactive technologies and simulations along with online and in-person learning programs to inform visitors about the Army's career, training and education opportunities.

Visitors experience the high-tech Army for themselves through virtual experiences as well as interaction with Soldiers. The center showcases today's Soldiers and tells their stories of how becoming Army Strong has positively impacted their lives.

Why is the Army doing this?

Today's high-tech young adults are continually bombarded with information about their world through a burgeoning social media environment. Accurate information about the military experience is often drowned out, or the information that does get through projects mixed messages or inaccuracies. To tell the Army story effectively, the AEC was created for young adults, their parents and other influencers to see, touch and learn firsthand what it means to be in the Army.

How does this benefit the Army?

Research shows that when Soldiers discuss their careers and motivations and their own Army experiences, it has a compelling impact on parents, friends and others to engage in dialogue appropriate to a life-changing decision to serve. The Army has had great success with experiential marketing and communications, including the America's Army game and the Virtual Army Experience, which have proven to be very effective in communicating the value of service with tech-savvy prospective recruits. At the AEC, young adults learn about Soldiering so they can see if there is a match between their life course objectives and opportunities presented in Soldiering.

What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?

The Army will run the AEC as a pilot program for up to two years, analyzing results of various innovations along the way to determine which of these innovations will be expanded to other markets.


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Aug. 16, 2008: 25th Anniversary of Army Family Action Plan site

September, 2008: National Preparedness Month

Sept. 2, 2008: Post World War II Japan

Sept. 7, 2008: Freedom Walk


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