The Minnesota National Guard's enduring goal is to provide an agile, resilient force, ready to fulfill any federal, state or community need. The Minnesota National Guard's success relies on its ability to provide military assets when called upon, working with interagency partners to enhance joint-response capabilities.
In order to fulfill its obligations to the state and nation, the Minnesota National Guard focuses on six priorities that guide the organization through decision-making and mission-planning processes, ultimately ensuring a unified and consistent response.
The past several years presented the Minnesota National Guard with many fluid and dynamic events that tested the organization's ability to operate under fluctuating budgets and strenuous mission requirements.
Though the operational circumstances and challenges have varied, the Minnesota National Guard's six priorities provide a fundamental blueprint that ensures success of the mission while maintaining personnel and equipment at optimal levels.
- Fielding a competent ready force
- Maintaining an optimal force structure
- Cyber security and response
- Develop sustainable infrastructure
- Service members and their Families
- Diversity of the force
|Competent Ready Force
|"We provide the required personnel, equipment and partnerships to ensure we have a competent, ready force to meet the needs of our state and nation."
The Minnesota National Guard is committed to providing the state and nation a
trained, prepared and equipped force, capable of responding to any community need
or federal mission.
A competent and ready force is achieved by recruiting the right mix of people training
them to do specific jobs and assigning them to units across the state. Additionally,
units are required to ensure their Soldiers and Airmen are proficient in operating the
most up-to-date equipment, and large-scale exercises are routinely executed to evaluate
performance and strengthen partnerships with civilian agencies, military counterparts and
allied countries. Personnel readiness, which is achieved when units ensure that all of their
people are administratively and medically prepared, is the final component to fielding a
competent and ready force.
For the Minnesota National Guard – and the Army National Guard as a whole – the past
two years were marked by decreased funding for military schools training, challenging the
organization’s ability to ensure Soldiers were trained and equipment was maintained. In
2016, however, the Minnesota National Guard saw an increase in military school funding
that was nearly double what was received in 2015. The additional funding allows Soldiers
to attend both Military Occupational Specialty training or professional development
training as well as their Annual Training requirements in the same year, which ensures
complete training for the service member and unit without sacrificing one military school
or training event for the other.
In 2016 the Minnesota National Guard began transitioning to a new method for reporting
the training readiness of its units using a metric known as “Objective T.” The new model –
to be implemented in 2017 – will provide a more objective assessment of a unit’s training
status and preparedness for mobilization. The model will paint a more accurate picture of a
unit’s readiness by standardizing and detailing requirements for unit training tasks, external
evaluations, role players, weapons qualification and collective live-fire proficiency.
The Minnesota National Guard will use the new readiness model, in conjunction with
adequate funding levels, to ensure service members attend military development schools as
well as annual training to maintain mission readiness levels that have historically been tops
in all branches throughout the nation.
In 2016 the Minnesota National Guard also began a process to enhance readiness at
its premier facility, Camp Ripley Training Center, by planning for complex, multidimensional
events that include role-playing participants in collective training events.
Role players are injected into scenarios as city mayors, tribal chiefs, non-government
organizations, religious figures and other key leaders that a Minnesota National Guard unit
would potentially interact with during a deployment.
The organization’s 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 34th Infantry Division, which
underwent a National Training Center rotation at Fort Irwin, California, in 2016,
experienced firsthand the value role players add to a training event. During their rotation
in the Mojave Desert, 1/34th ABCT Soldiers were required to navigate political and social
challenges in addition to battling both conventional and non-conventional forces.
The 1/34th ABCT’s NTC rotation resulted in the unit being rated as one of the U.S.
Army’s most prepared armored brigades, capable of rapidly deploying to support a variety
of global missions. Goals for 2017 and beyond include adding a role-playing element to
training events at Camp Ripley to ensure all Minnesota National Guard units can maintain
a similar readiness posture.