News: Sustainers visit U of L, advise ROTC cadets
Story by Sgt. Michael Behlin
FORT KNOX, Ky. – Members of the 3rd Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) toured the University of Louisville, Feb. 29, to learn about the university and to advise Reserve Officers Training Corps students on their future careers.
The 3rd ESC visited U of L as part of a continuing partnership which has allowed the unit to participate in several events with the women’s basketball team. Attending the tour with the 3rd ESC were several commissioned and non-commissioned officers who participated in the team’s visit to Fort Knox and Dunagan Teamwork Development Course in October.
This latest event was an attempt to educate unit members on the University while allowing cadets of the Cardinal Battalion the opportunity to speak with soldiers in various career occupations.
Col. Howard Merritt, the 3rd ESC’s chief of staff, spearheaded the ROTC visit and invited cadets to pick the brains of his commissioned officers in order to obtain knowledge on the various military occupations.
“We wanted to make sure that the cadets know what branch they were going to select and what they will get with that branch,” said Merritt. “Each branch has its strengths and weaknesses based on individual preference.”
Merritt, an ROTC graduate himself, said he didn’t have an opportunity as such when he was a cadet. He said by doing so, he wanted to provide cadets with enough information to be able to make an informed decision when it comes to selecting a branch.
Throughout the visit, the cadet’s questions ranged from platoon leader responsibilities to career progression. This opportunity allowed cadets to get firsthand information on the careers awaiting them as a commissioned officer.
“Meeting with officers from different branches was a really valuable experience,” said David Hea, a Cardinal Battalion cadet.
Hea, a former member of the 3rd ESC, said the advice he received during the brief was excellent and would definitely help when the time comes to select a branch.
For the commissioned officers in attendance, advising the cadets was not only an opportunity to inform the Army’s future leaders on their potential careers, but also an opportunity to sell their individual branches.
During the brief the 3rd ESC provided officers from several Army branches to include armor, corps of engineers, military police, military intelligence, ordnance and chaplain corps.
With representatives of these branches in attendance, cadets were able to receive accurate descriptions of what each entailed.
“The cadets were happy to be told the whole, most updated truth about what a platoon leader does,” said Capt. Hyun Jang, the battlefield circulation control officer for the 3rd ESC. “I feel that I successfully informed them on what they should expect.”