News: Ordnance sergeant major visits Fort Carson
Story by Spc. Andrew Ingram
FORT CARSON, Colo. – The U.S. Army Ordnance Corps regimental command sergeant major met with Ordnance Corps soldiers and non-commissioned officers during a visit to Fort Carson, Feb. 8-10.
Command Sgt. Maj. Sultan A. Muhammad said he made the trip to personally deliver a brief on the state of the Ordnance Corps to Fort Carson soldiers, relay information about some of the upcoming changes to corps policy, and gather input from enlisted soldiers at every level of the formation.
“As a regimental sergeant major, it is good to see the soldiers and get their take on how we can help them – how can we better their careers,” Muhammad said. “By coming out here, I can show them the techniques to further themselves.”
Muhammad toured Fort Carson’s facilities, spoke to ordnance soldiers, assigned to the 43rd Sustainment Brigade and 71st Ordnance Group (Explosive Ordnance Disposal), and gave select soldiers the opportunity to ask questions and provide feedback during meals at Wolf Dining Facility.
During the state of the corps briefs, Muhammad highlighted the Army Career Tracker and Structured Self Development as two of the biggest tools necessary to furthering soldiers personal ambitions and strengthening the force as a whole.
Soldiers can use the ACT to develop professional goals, monitor career progression and receive guidance from senior advisors in their career field, he said. Structured Self Development is a mandatory online training tool designed to build soldiers’ knowledge base throughout their career.
“Many soldiers don’t understand how important these programs are,” Muhammad said. “These programs are going to affect the way soldiers get promoted; it's going to affect the way they get into schools.”
Soldiers also need to know they have an avenue to affect change in their career fields, said Muhammad.
“I wanted to let these soldiers know that we are there for them,” he said. “When all else fails, and you can’t get something through your chain of command, we are here to help them.”
After spending time with the 43rd SB and 71st EOD soldiers, Muhammad expressed admiration at their ability to maintain professional decorum and standards while discussing the challenges facing the Ordnance Corps.
“There is a big cry out there in the Army right now about slipping professionalism, standards and discipline,” Muhammad said. “This post has a lot of professionalism, a lot of motivation, and a lot of enthusiasm. I attribute that to the leaders here at Fort Carson. I truly believe that this is one of the best posts for quality of life, discipline and standards.”
Muhammad’s directness reminded many of the Fort Carson soldiers and enlisted leaders that, to be successful, the Army must work as a unit toward a common goal instead of focusing one individual or one company, said Sgt. 1st Class Marlon Castro, senior mechanic, 247th Quartermaster Company, 68th Combat Sustainment Support Battalion, 43rd SB.
“It is good that he came; it shows that he cares,” said Castro. “I liked that he didn’t promise to fix everything. He has a lot of work to do to get us where we need to be, but we all have a lot of work to do. We all have to pull our weight.”
“It was a privilege to meet the sergeant major of the Ordnance Corps,” said Spc. Levi Wait, wheeled vehicle mechanic, 549th Quartermaster Company, 68th CSSB. “I think it was really thoughtful of him to take the time to sit down with us, so the soldiers could get a better idea of who he is and what he does.”
Muhammad’s visit encouraged many ordnance soldiers to refocus on furthering their careers through civilian and military education, said Wait.