Posts Tagged Training

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, RELOAD!

Reload!

PICATINNY ARSENAL, N.J. — Because once is never enough, we came up with a solution on what to do with old artillery shells. Click the link to find out where they all went.

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It’s like that Avatar movie

Motion-capture suits were worn to create avatars for the M777A2 trainer. No blue cat-people were rendered.

PICATINNY ARSENAL, N.J. — Like something out of a Hollywood sci-fi production, Soldiers and Marines donned motion-capture suits and underwent face scans to render computer avatars of themselves. But this was no movie set and there would be no red carpet premiere.

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RDECOM recognizes NCO, Soldier of the Year

 ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. — After five days of competition that pushed four Soldiers’ physical abilities and technical expertise, Staff Sgt. Markus Whisman and Pfc. Joshua Inserra earned honors March 30 as the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command’s Noncommissioned Officer and Soldier of the Year, respectively.

RDECOM’s enlisted corps serves an important role by acting as Soldier representatives with the Army’s scientists and engineers, Command Sgt. Maj. Lebert Beharie said.

RDECOM Director Dale Ormond and Beharie presented the winners Army Commendation Medals; gift certificates from AAFES and Morale, Welfare and Recreation; and an RDECOM backpack filled with T-shirts.

Ormond recognized all the participants for their important role in RDECOM’s mission of empowering, unburdening and protecting American Soldiers.

“Thank you for your service. Thank you for your enthusiasm, motivation, leadership and commitment to excellence,” Ormond said.

Whisman, a research and development adviser assigned to Army Research Laboratory at White Sands Missile Range, N.M., and Inserra, a signal support systems maintainer assigned to Communications–Electronics Research, Development and Engineering Center at APG, now advance to the Army Materiel Command NCO and Soldier of the Year competitions.

Also vying for the honors were:

– Staff Sgt. Sharalis Canales, a behavioral health NCO assigned to Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center at Natick, Mass.

– Staff Sgt. Christopher Duff, an explosive ordnance disposal team leader assigned to the EOD Technology Directorate at Picatinny Arsenal, N.J.

The Soldiers discussed their backgrounds, family lives, personal goals and combat tours with the RDECOM public affairs office during the competition week.

GAINING LEADERSHIP, EDUCATION, SKILLS

The Soldiers agreed they have benefited tremendously from their decision to enlist.

Inserra, the junior Soldier among the competitors with 22 months of service, said he enlisted because of his family’s positive experiences in the military. His brother served in the Army, and a cousin served in the Marine Corps.

“They had that feeling of knowledge, training and confidence. I wanted that,” Inserra said.

Inserra is planning to use the Army’s educational benefits to complete his degree in electrical engineering. He praised his NCOs for their leadership and hopes to emulate them as he progresses during his Army career.

“I have a great bunch of NCOs in front of me. I want to be like them. I want to have the leadership that they have,” he said. “I’ve gained so much more confidence in myself than I could have ever imagined. I’m enjoying that confidence. I’m more confident in my writing. I’m more confident in the way I speak to people.”

Canales has changed her life dramatically since enlisting six years ago.

“I was homeless. I was living in a shelter in Times Square for six months. I needed a sense of direction. I went to the recruiting station and I joined,” she said. “The Army has been my family, and it’s been everything to me.”

Canales completed her associate’s degree three weeks ago. She is now studying for a bachelor’s degree in psychology and then plans to pursue a master’s degree in social work. After retiring from active duty, she hopes to return as an Army civilian employee.

“[I want] to continue serving in the mental-health field to help Soldiers, families and retirees,” she said.
“It’s weird how I went from being homeless and before that living in a foster home with counselors.

“When I joined the Army, the roles reversed. Now I am a counselor, so I’m able to give back. I think it’s wonderful that I can do that. My experience before I joined helped shape what I’ve learned.”

COUNTERING MISCONCEPTIONS

The Soldiers said the American public holds misconceptions about the Army that are reinforced by incidents such as when Staff Sgt. Robert Bales was accused of killing 17 Afghan civilians.

“One of the misconceptions is that we all go to Iraq, run around, shooting guns at whoever we see, and killing everyone,” Duff said. “That’s not what we’re there for at all. It’s not what it’s all about.

“There is a mission over there. We are all over there for a small piece of that mission and to come home safely.”

Canales echoed Duff’s comments. She said her military experience differs greatly from the images seen on TV news of infantrymen on patrol in Iraq or Afghanistan.

“I think a lot of civilians who don’t know much about the Army believe that all we do is go to war, fight, and kill people,” Canales said. “Even my brothers believe I carry a gun at all times. I wish they could come and see what we do in the Army. I’m a counselor, and I’ve been in the hospital setting for the last six years.”

COMBAT BRINGS A NEW PERSPECTIVE

Whisman and Duff have deployed to the Middle East, and they gained a better understanding of the military’s objectives in the area.

“When you deploy, you get to see a little bit of the bigger picture,” Duff said. “You see why we do what we do and what we’re there to do. For a family, it reassured my wife that she can get through a deployment and keep the house under control.”

Whisman said he has a new appreciation for life as an American.

“I saw some things that definitely put my life here in perspective. They have so little. I’ll never again take for granted what I have at home,” Whisman said. “It could be so much worse. As bad as you think you might have it, it could always be a lot worse.”

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Four RDECOM Soldiers vie for command honors

ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. — Four enlisted Soldiers will test their physical fitness, endurance, technical aptitude and reasoning skills March 26 to 30 for top honors within the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command.

On a sunny, cool and breezy morning, three staff sergeants and one private first class kicked off the five-day competition for RDECOM Noncommissioned Officer and Soldier of the Year.

Vying for the awards are:

– Staff Sgt. Sharalis Canales, a behavioral health NCO assigned to Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center at Natick, Mass. She is from New York City and has six years of service.

– Staff Sgt. Christopher Duff, an explosive ordnance disposal team leader assigned to the EOD Technology Directorate at Picatinny Arsenal, N.J. He is from Riner, Va., and has eight years of service.

– Staff Sgt. Markus Whisman, a research and development adviser assigned to Army Research Laboratory at White Sands Missile Range, N.M. He is from Palm Bay, Fla., and has seven years of service.

– Pfc. Joshua Inserra, a signal support systems maintainer assigned to Communications–Electronics Research, Development and Engineering Center at APG. He is from Yerington, Nev., and has one year of service.

They began with the Army Physical Fitness Test, followed by weapons qualification at an ARL small-arms target range. RDECOM NCOs Sgt. Maj. William Tager and Sgt. 1st Class Chris Currie supervised the M-4 Rifle marksmanship test, as well as an M-240B Machine Gun function check that included loading, unloading and correcting malfunctions.

The participants will continue with tasks that examine their physical and mental abilities: a land-navigation course at Lauderick Creek Training Site, obstacle course at Gunpowder Military Reservation, Warrior tasks within training scenarios, 12-mile road march with 40-pound rucksack, essay and written exam, media interview and board appearance.

RDECOM Command Sgt. Maj. Lebert Beharie will preside over an awards ceremony March 30. The winners will advance to the Army Materiel Command NCO and Soldier of the Year competition.

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It’s Not Easy Being Green!

It's Not Easy Being Green!

Army Research Laboratory's Samantha Wallace, left, leads an all-civilian 'combat team' on a room clearing mission as part of Greening Course training.

ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. — Extremely early morning wake-ups and exercise became the new norm for 29 civilians participating in the Army Research Laboratory Greening Course 2011. Leadership designed the event to give civilian employees first-hand experience on the rigorous training Soldiers endure to build physical stamina and strengthen mental aptitude.

To Weapons and Materials Research Directorate’s Francesco J. Murphy, “Marching is a lot harder than it looks. You kind of expect certain things already but it kind of helps bring it home.”

But he said by the end of this training, he expected to feel more associated with the Soldier, a goal course organizers want realized.

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AMC social media conference shares guidance, best practices

If you’re reading this article, chances are you’re one of the 500 million people in the world who have a Facebook account. Or perhaps you’re one of the 75 million who use Twitter. Likely, you are one of 924 million who watch videos on You Tube. Or perhaps you’ve browsed one of three billion photos uploaded to Flickr.

Let’s face it – social media plays an active role in our lives. Research shows that more than 80 percent of Americans use social media tools and websites on a monthly basis. Social networking sites like Facebook and Twitter are now the number one activity people do on the Web. Further, more than 75 percent of all active internet users regularly read blogs, according to Technorati, a leading blog search engine and directory.

Social media is changing the way we communicate. Just think – it took television 13 years to finally reach 50 million people. It took Facebook only two years.

All across the Army and the Department of Defense, organizations and units are actively engaging audiences through the online world of social media. While incorporating social media into the military began a few years ago, there has been a recent push from the Army and DoD to establish policy, guidance and education on social media to the workforce.

Representatives from Picatinny Arsenal’s Public Affairs Office got a taste of the Army’s social media guidance and best practices at the Army Materiel Command Social Media Conference, hosted at Redstone Arsenal Feb. 2. The guest speaker at the conference was Maj. Juanita Chang, Director of the Online and Social Media Division, Office of the Chief of Public Affairs.

“Social media is not a fad – it is here to stay,” Chang said, referencing the U.S. Army Facebook page her office manages, which has more than 600,000 fans. “Social media helps the Army better inform the American Public about their Army, bringing the nation closer to the Soldiers, Families and Civilians who serve them.”

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RDECOM commander leads panel discussion on training and simulation

Panel Discussion on Training and Simulation

ORLANDO, Fla. — Training the American Warfighter in the digital age in the midst of substantial budget constraints was among topics discussed at the 10th annual TechNet-Orlando Conference here today.

The panel was led by Maj. Gen. Nick Justice, commanding general, U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command, and consisted of members of the military’s training and evaluation community. The conference brings together senior members of military, industry and academia in the fields of command, control, communications, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance – known as C4ISR.

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Senior leaders focus on professional development

Senior leaders focus on professional development

ABERDEEN, Md. — Senior civilian leaders met with up-and-coming Aberdeen Proving Ground managers for a panel discussion on human capital, mentorship and transformation issues Aug. 25 at the Aberdeen Higher Education and Conference Center.

This is the second iteration of the APG Leadership Cohort Program. Twelve Army organizations from the installation selected 29 motivated managers to participate in a year-long professional development program designed to develop future civilian leaders.

“The Army is going to depend on all the leaders it has to look for ways to be more efficient in what they do every day,” said Gary Martin, U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command executive deputy to the command general. “When I look at where the opportunities are for leaders, it’s in everything we do.

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RDECOM leaders tackle conflict management

Leaders tackle conflict
ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. –Learning how to deal with conflict in the workplace is the topic of discussion June 9 for a group of supervisors from the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command.

Eleven managers are taking an executive coaching session at the Edgewood Conference Center with Instructor Andy Kirkpatrick. This is the fourth session Kirkpatrick has provided this year to professionally develop the RDECOM civilian workforce.

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Media: Natick Labs practices real-time response to fake terror attack

soldiertruck

The MetroWest Daily News:

NATICK — Before being interrupted by a real-life emergency situation, yesterday’s counter-terrorism exercise at the U.S. Army Soldier Systems Center was going well, officials said.

The military complex, also known as the Natick Labs, played host to a simulated terrorist plot meant to test the Army’s counter-terrorism response. “Operation Lasting Calm,” as the exercise was called, introduced a scenario in which terrorists detonated bombs at points across the base, took hostages and traded gunfire with police.

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Technology Troops!

RDECOM NCOs attend technology brief
Lockheed Martin presents a technology brief to Research, Development and Engineering Command Soldiers quarterly NCO Professional Development training at the Simulation & Training Technology Center on the Univ. of Central Florida campus in Orlando March 3.

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NCOs synchronize, synergize at STTC

RDECOM NCOs synchronize, synergize at STTC
Sixty U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command noncommissioned officers and invited guests convened March 1-5 at the Simulation and Training Technology Center on the University of Central Florida campus for quarterly NCO Professional Development. Read more…

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RDECOM holds first executive coaching class

RDECOM holds first executive coaching class
ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. – The U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command kicked off a civilian employee professional development program March 4 at the Edgewood Conference Center. With 20 volunteer employees, the session focused on coaching and teamwork development during an eight-hour training session. Read more…

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STTC deploys Hip-Pocket Training to Haiti

The Combat Medic Card Game allows medics to refresh skills after duty and during lulls.

The Combat Medic Card Game allows medics to refresh skills after duty and during lulls.

Military medical professionals serving in Haiti have a new way to stay on top of the latest training. The U.S. Army Simulation and Training Technology Center sent a Combat Medical Card Game to joint service medical units providing relief in Haiti. Michelle Milliner has the story. Read more…

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Army R&D, PEO partner to train new technology

FORT MONMOUTH, N.J. - A U.S. Army research and development center partnered with a program executive office support team to provide critical training Jan. 22-24 on new technology for National Guard troops deploying to Afghanistan.

At the request of 1st Army East, the U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Research, Development and Engineering Center Warfighter Support Office and the Program Executive Office Command, Control and Communications Tactical Northeast Regional Response Center trained the Vermont National Guard’s 86th Infantry Brigade Combat Team “Mountain” on the Global Rapid Response Information Package. Read more…

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Army Management Staff College Basic Course kicks off

Army Management Staff College Civilian Education System Basic Course kicks off
ABERDEEN PROVING GROUNDS, Md. – Officials from the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command welcomed 33 students to the Army Management Staff College Civilian Education System Basic Course Dec. 7.

This is the first time the Army has exported the class outside the AMSC campus. The RDECOM leadership partnered with AMSC to bring the program to Aberdeen to begin leadership training in anticipation of the impact of Base Realignment and Closure. The BRAC will bring thousands of jobs to APG in the next couple of years. Read more…

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