Sports technology company DraftKings announced it has furthered its commitment to responsible gaming in a health-informed approach via sponsorship of Kindbridge Research Institute (KRI).
Supporting the Next Generation of Researchers
DraftKings agreed to provide multi-year funding to KRI and become the sole sponsor of KRI’s Military Research Associate Program (MRAP), which is designed to assist the transition of military service veterans to pursue advanced training in public mental health research.
Chrissy Thurmond, senior director of Responsible Gaming at DraftKings, believes it is a privilege for the Boston-based gaming and technology business to spearhead efforts in support of “the next generation of researchers while training veterans for new careers.”
“DraftKings has a deep tradition of supporting the military community as part of its Tech for Heroes initiative and S.E.R.V.E.S. corporate social responsibility program,” Thurmond said, pointing to previous support provided under the social responsibility program to KRI’s research aimed at filling the gap of information related to problem gambling among veterans.
“We will continue to seek out ways to give back to service members, veterans and their families,” Thurmond concluded.
KRI’s MRAP aims to attract more military veterans to work in mental health research and treatment by teaching participants academic skills, including academic writing, literature search and review, study design, and resume research and building, and it involves the publishing of peer-reviewed articles.
Let Veterans Have Voice in Mental Health Issues
Nathan Smith, Ph.D., executive director of KRI, was happy to team with DraftKings “on this one-of-a-kind program,” convinced that no one is in a better position to understand mental health problems than military veterans.
“This program provides training and support for transitioning service members into public mental health professionals,” he continued, highlighting that the program’s objective is to let “those who served in the armed forces have a voice in the discussion of veteran mental health for generations to come.”
The two-year program is quite demanding as participants are expected to develop the skills necessary to continue their education at the graduate level and they will have to publish at least one academic paper in a peer-reviewed journal and present a poster or speak at an academic conference in the first year of.
DraftKings and KRI teamed in 2021 when the Boston-based operator announced a multi-year financial commitment to support KRI’s research in the field of problem gambling among veterans under the 50x4Vets program as an effort to gather evidence-based research in the area and improve the lives of military service veterans impacted by gambling harm.
DraftKings’ commitment to those who have served in the military is also displayed under the S.E.R.V.E.S. corporate social responsibility program, as the operator provides training for current and returning veterans and their spouses and offers them to explore careers in tech through its Tech for Heroes Program.