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    Follow the Leader: Cadets learn what’s right

    Follow the Leader: Cadets learn what's right

    Photo By Spc. Tynisha Daniel | Army Staff Sgt. Terry Sumner and Bryan Pope represent the 1/398th of the 104th...... read more read more



    Story by Spc. Tynisha Daniel 

    108th Training Command- Initial Entry Training

    The annual Cadet Basic Camp Course held during the summer at Fort Knox is based on leadership development and situational exercise to push the Army’s future leaders to their physical and mental limits while challenging them to discover their true leadership potential. Newly implemented, cadets now receive hands on training by the Army’s most talented and promising one percent, Army Drill Sergeants.

    The assistance of Drill Sergeant with the new summer training for cadets introduces cadets to their first NCO leadership. They quickly learn from day one of training what is expected of them and see leadership at first hand.

    “We are here to instill discipline, to give Cadets an idea of what right looks like according to Army standards from a very basic level,” said Drill Sergeant, Staff Sgt. Terry Sumner with the 1/398th from Millington, Tenn. The 29-day camp starts with individual training and leads to collective training, building the minds and bodies of Cadets who could someday become future leaders in the Army.

    As a Drill Sergeant, the responsibility of coaching, counseling and mentoring thousands of the Army’s future leaders and Soldiers is no small task. Excellence in the profession of a drill sergeant is the epitome of what the Army embodies.

    Allowing the Army’s future leaders the opportunity to learn under Non-commissioned officers (NCOs) proves beneficial for both the Cadets and Drill Sergeants. “They (Cadets) have to learn from the ground up, you can’t lead if you don’t know how to follow, we (Drill Sergeants) also get more opportunity to train as well,” said Sumner.

    “I think having the Drill Sergeants here shows Cadets how NCOs’ work,” said Cadet Sean Flynn, North Carolina State University. “They help us cadets prepare for situations where you need to be detail oriented because when you’re put in a battle field and deployed in a hostile environment attention to detail is what will help you survive.”

    Although it can be seemed as a cultural shock for some cadets, those cadets that stick through to the end of the summer training find it to be a great learning experience.

    “Having the Drill Sergeants here helps instill a sense of discipline that you wouldn’t get if you weren’t being watched over by Drill Sergeants all the time, we would not have the same level of cleanliness in our rooms or our actions without them, said Cadet Eddie Herrera, University of California Santa Barbara.

    Allowing Drill Sergeants to join U.S. Army Cadet Command in training Cadets allows cadets the opportunity to see “what’s right” and gives civilians during the summer training the opportunity to see if the military is for them before actually joining.

    Master Sgt. Bryan Arbic, a cadre member of Cadet Command, explained that during the summer training an average of 12% of cadets find that they aren’t ready or no longer interested in the joining the Army, whether it be as an officer or an enlisted Soldier.

    “Cadet training proves to be effective and allows the Army to weed out those civilians who can’t be leaders before spending the time and funding on them when actually enlisting,” said Arbic.

    Implementing the Drill Sergeant aspect to the Cadet Summer Training brings the same familiarity to the future leaders training as it does for Basic Combat Training (BCT) Soldiers. Drills Sergeants introduce both future officers and Soldiers’ to the Army Standard.

    We hold the sole responsibility of being the first to show these guys (cadets/recruits) what right looks like in the Army, explained Drill Sergeant Bryan Pope, a Staff Sgt. with the 1/398th from Millington Tenn.

    “Unlike BCT, we switch the roles for Cadets. Said Sumner. “Rather than just teaching them to follow direction like we do with basic trainees, we begin to teach them early in training how to lead; we give them roles as platoon sergeants and squad leaders and they are evaluated on their performance in those roles,” he concluded.

    To be in the Army to means to adopt discipline and order. Cadet Summer Training provides civilians the opportunity to gain the discipline of a Soldier and the leadership qualities that will help them maintain order as future officers in the Army after college. For more information on Cadet Summer Training and/or Drill Sergeants visit the sites below.

    Cadet Summer Training

    Becoming an Army Drill Sergeant



    Date Taken: 07.22.2017
    Date Posted: 09.18.2017 14:55
    Story ID: 248723
    Location: FORT KNOX, KY, US 
    Hometown: MILLINGTON, TN, US
    Hometown: RALEIGH, NC, US
    Hometown: SANTA BARBARA, CA, US

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