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Adjutant General BOLC-B Week 3

June 08, 2010 | Captain Matthew Riggs

Over the last two weeks our training at Fort Jackson has been focused on combat operations. Our instructors for this training were senior NCO's lead by a Military Police Captain from the "Combined Arms Division". The CAD instructors are all combat experienced with multiple combat deployments to Afghanistan and Iraq under their belt.

The main training focus was on convoy operations. Each student was able to log onto a high-end laptop station and run through a convoy operation. The Army-specific software simulated the current operating environment overseas complete with roads, cities, civilians and the enemy blended in to the environment. The instructors threw variables at us like IED blasts, sniper and small arms fire and each vehicle had to react and communicate effectively to make it out of the killzone. Each gun truck had a driver, gunner and truck commander (TC), to play out the mission. We were able to communicate with each other during the mission via headsets. It was a great way to get efficient on battle drills for many different scenarios and freshen up on effective radio communication. From the simulation we went into the live convoy portion where we took up the role of the truck commander, dismount or gunner. I was the TC, so I had to communicate with my team in the truck during the mission, as well as all of the other trucks. I had a lot of fun going through the scenarios and getting some more practice on the radio. It is a much different experience when you are commanding the truck versus being a dismount or gunner like I was a few years back!

To complete the CAD training we finished Army Combatives familiarization last week, and I am still feeling some of the soreness from that! Overall the quality of the instruction during the training and classes have been pretty good. This week is all in the classroom, with a test just about everyday. I was having a lot of fun with the combat training, so this is going to be a little bit of a transition for me, but I think I will end up enjoying the classroom portion as well. Stay tuned for updates.


5 Comments

  • Jaime Guerrero
    12/8/2010 12:17 AM
    Nice i saw ur vid. on youtube hey tell me how to join and what i need in order to join the army
  • Matt
    12/8/2010 11:44 AM
    Jaime,

    Go to your local recruiting station (they have them in pretty much every major city) or talk to anyone you know that is in. People that you know will be able to give you a more complete picture of their experience.

    Figure out if you want to go Active Duty (your job is being a Soldier every day) or if you want to do National Guard or Reserve. I was NG and now I am AD. Both have advantages. If you have a great civilian job, or want to finish school, NG might be a good option. If you have nothing holding you down for the next 2-4 years and want to work as a Soldier every day and receive great pay and benefits, AD might be a good route for you.

    There are many more considerations to go along with either choice, and your recruiter can help you sort that all out. Make sure you talk to someone that you feel comfortable with, and someone who is actually listening to what you are looking for from the Army.

    And lastly, if you are seeking advice from military personnel, especially Officers and NCO's (the ranks with the stripes) be respectful and call them sir, ma'am or sergeant. Don't say things like "Tell me how to join" Say, sir, I am interested in joining, how can I get started? They will be impressed by your professional attitude, and when you get in you will be one step ahead of your peers. Thanks for the comment hope that helps.
  • Andrew
    1/23/2011 2:58 AM
    How is AG? I thought about branching that and just want some more info. It's between AG or intelligence. I'm currently MSII :D
  • Matt
    2/5/2011 11:08 PM
    The Adjutant General Branch is very different from a lot of the other branches. They are in the business of "Force Sustainment". In a highly simplified sense, the mission of the sustainer is to ensure the war fighters (Infantry, Armor etc.) are "ready" and able to do their job. And that means that commanders of these units must know what the current status of their unit is and what job it is capable of performing. That is where you as a personnel officer (S-1 staff section) comes into play. They are the right hand person to the commander and must know what is going on at all times.

    If you feel you work well with other people and are inclined to "serve" others in the form of customer service, it may be a good branch for you. Human Resource Companies exist to ensure every Soldier within their realm of responsibility is taken care of with whatever help they need administratively (in a broad sense). While overseas human resource Soldiers process other Soldiers as the arrive and leave from country and they also do postal missions overseas handling and distributing mail.

    There is a lot more that AG Soldiers and companies do, but those are some of the main missions they have. As an LT you will either be a platoon leader in an HRC or you will go straight to staff as an assistant to the S1 (personnel management) or you will BE the S1! That is a huge task to take on and you must be very motivated and don't mind handling multiple emails a day and making sure everyone's records are good to go and also do whatever the commander needs help with on a daily basis (setting up briefings or preparing for ceremonies that kind of thing). It can be rewarding but it is a low of work.

    I would say if you like being tactical and maneuvering troops and patrols and want to have a lot of daily physical demands you might want to try one of the other branches, because it is not AG's job to fight wars. It is more mentally tasking. You may very well still go on patrols when you are downrange, but in the garrison environment not deployed, you will either be focused on training your troops on the AG job or you will actually have some sort of staff AG job. You will not go to the range and MOUT shoot houses all the time. You will still be training on the Army warrior tasks (shoot, move, communicate) , but that will not be the main focus of the company as a whole.
  • Andrew
    2/5/2011 11:56 PM
    Oh Ok. Yeah, I just got much information about it you know? It really sounds like my cup of tea. Thanks so much for the info. It sounds great to hear it from an actual AG themselves ya know? Like I said thanks for all the info and keep going! Hooah!

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