CAMP MURRAY, Wash. – Members of the Army and Air National Guard from Washington state, California and Oregon joined in a test of battle communications and force integration here over a few days in November. It was the first ever squadron-level joint live, virtual and constructive joint fires training event that tied digital simulations involving air support operations squadrons, an air support operations center and tactical operations centers into live field training.
I hope you’re enjoying your holiday as you spend time with family and friends this season.
As the New Year approaches, many will set out to accomplish new personal and professional goals. For Soldiers who have educational goals planned for 2016, I would like to share some of the ways the Army is working to help you reach those goals.
How many of you want to obtain a degree while you are serving?
Do you remember when I talked to you about the emphasis we are placing on education and training in a previous blog? Well, the Army is serious and working diligently to provide an easier way for you to get a degree while serving your nation.
There are actually programs designed through partnerships between the Army and colleges and universities where you can receive college credit for your existing civilian education and military experience. These partnerships have resulted in what we call the College of the American Soldier, or CAS.
With the establishment of Army University, there is tremendous opportunity for the College of American Soldier to expand significantly.
CAS can help you can get college credit for Noncommissioned Officer Education System, or NCOES, and functional courses taken throughout your career. We have programs that can help you maximize college credits for completing military schools, while minimizing academic residency requirements at a given college.
Here are three CAS programs I want to highlight for you:
The Enlisted Education Program provides an opportunity for entry-level Soldiers to obtain an associate’s degree during their first term of enlistment. This program is designed to use the recommended credit for Basic Training, Advanced Individual Training or One Station Unit Training, Structured Self Development and the Warrior Leader Course toward your degree.
The Career NCO Degrees Program maximizes college credit for military training and education, transfers credit between colleges and minimizes academic residency requirements to obtain a bachelor’s degree.
The Advanced Degree Program provides candidates and graduates of the Sergeants Major Course an opportunity to obtain a master’s degree during their tenure at the U.S. Army Sergeants Major Academy.
You have a bright future ahead of you in the Army, and we want you to be successful professionally and personally so take advantage of the programs that are in place to help you achieve your educational goals.
What do you think about these opportunities to further your education? I am interested to know how you plan to use these programs.
Here’s to a great 2016!
Victory Starts Here!
– CSM D
Fire Commissioner Daniel A. Nigro and U. S. Army Major General Anthony C. Funkhouser signed a Memorandum of Understanding Dec. 8 formalizing a bilateral partnership between the FDNY and U.S. Army that will focus on strengthening their respective introductory training programs for new firefighters and military recruits.
The MOU was drafted following a year-long series of meetings and initiatives between FDNY and U.S. Army personnel involved in their training programs for new hires, including visits by Army personnel during probationary firefighter training sessions and by FDNY members to military bases to observe the Army’s programs.
“Everything we do begins with training, and by partnering with the Center for Initial Military Training our instructors will learn from decades of battle-tested techniques and further enhance the training our Probationary Firefighters receive,” said Fire Commissioner Nigro. “We’ve already seen great value in this relationship and we’re excited to move to the next level by formalizing this working relationship which will continue to strengthen both the FDNY and the U.S. Army.”
“We are deeply honored to enter this partnership, which symbolizes our shared commitment to provide quality training to the men and women who enter our respective institutions,” said U.S. Army CIMT Commanding General, Major General Anthony C. Funkhouser. “Our shared lessons learned will manifest into a mutual commitment to the men and women who protect Americans and our homeland.”
Going forward, the partnership between FDNY Probationary Firefighting School and the Army’s CIMT will review and provide recommendations to educational course management plans, policies and procedures, instructor certification and validation programs, use of equipment training and procedures. Personnel from each organization will continue to conduct site visits and share best practices in their respective programs.
“Probationary Firefighter training is always evolving to reflect the best practices available and, with the help of the U.S. Army, Probie School will further refine and improve its’ focus on developing strength, endurance and mobility in our newest hires to prepare them for the difficult job serving as New York City firefighters,” said Chief of Department James E. Leonard.
“Our two organizations share numerous areas of mutual interest, to include operating in dense urban areas,” said CIMT Command Sergeant Major Dennis J. Woods. “We anticipate that this bilateral partnership will significantly improve our systems of learning, equipment and force survivability. We look forward to fully developing this partnership with our brothers and sisters at the FDNY.”
One significant change included in the MOU involves a new training protocol for Drill Instructors at the Fire Department. Previously, while the FDNY based elements of its’ Drill Instructors training on Army protocols, never before was there any formal military training for this role. Going forward, all firefighters assigned as Drill Instructors at Probie School will attend training by the U.S. Army, which will assist FDNY in developing a certification course for this role.
About FDNY Probationary Firefighter School:
Over their 18 weeks at the FDNY Training Academy, Probationary Firefighters are extensively trained in all aspects of their job as Firefighters: fire suppression and medical response, hazardous materials, collapse and confined space rescue training, auto extrication, building inspections and procedures for engine and ladder operations. Following their training, Probationary Firefighters are assigned to firehouses throughout the city, where they gain field experience under the guidance of senior firefighters and officers.
About U.S. Army Center for Initial Military Training:
The U.S. Army Center for Initial Military Training is the Core Function Lead for the U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC) for all initial entry training. CIMT provides a process that aligns the development of competencies (knowledge, skills, abilities, attributes) and behaviors in civilian volunteers in order for them to become Soldiers who are physically ready, grounded in Army Values, and competent in their skills so they are able to contribute as leaders or members of a team upon arrival at their first unit of assignment. Initial Military Training includes developing baseline proficiency on warrior tasks and battle drills and critical skills associated with their military occupational specialty (MOS) or officer basic branch.
Photo credit: New York City Fire Department Commissioner Daniel A. Nigro speaks during the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the FDNY and U.S. Army at the FDNY Training Academy on Randalls Island, Dec. 8, 2015. (Photo by New York City Fire Department)