Basic Camp

Three phases to graduation

Cadets wait for instructions during a physical training test

Earning a gold bar and becoming an Army leader is a process, of which the

Leader’s Training Course is only the first step. But even that first step involves a series of growth.

The course is broken down into three distinct phases.

Phase One: Soldier First

A drill sergeant checks Cadets into their barracks at the beginning of LTC.

This is a basic introduction to the Army aimed at teaching Cadets skills and knowledge necessary to successfully participate in the next three phases.

Cadets have described this phase, which covers the first few days of the course, as “teaching them what right looks like.”
Specifically, Cadets learn military customs and courtesies, such as saluting, how to wear the Army uniform, how to march and organize their living area. Cadets will get to know their peers during this initial phase.
They also will be introduced to the physical training program and take a diagnostic PT test, as well as go through various stages of in-processing.
There is no formal evaluation on  leadership in this period. Training is conducted by drill sergeants.

Phase Two: Warrior Leader

To expose the least amount of her body to the enemy as possible, Cadet Catherine Hicks, from the University of South Carolina, kneels into a firing position to check for enemy forces.

This part of the Leader’s Training Course covers adventure training, which builds both Cadet self-confidence and unit esprit-de-corps. The focus in the beginning of these three weeks is on individual skills. As this phase progresses, Cadets learn more about working in the group and squad dynamic.

Cadets continue to hone their basic military skills in order to function as a small-group member.

In this phase, Cadets will take part in a variety of individual and squad-level exercises. Leadership roles will change every 24 hours, with new assessments given at the end of each day.

Cadets will be asked to assess themselves and their peers.

This phase’s capstone exercise is the field training exercise, covering 3½ days. The FTX is considered one of ­the most enjoyable segments of LTC.

Cadets are exposed to squad-level operations where cadre assess the Cadet’s leadership ability in a field environment. They will spend all of their time in the field, moving tactically along squad tactics lanes, engaging opposition forces made up of seasoned cadre as they assault bunkers and react, as well as carry out, ambush scenarios.

The main focus of the FTX is small-unit tactics and combat training, in which Cadets will use paintball guns.

The field training exercise is intentionally tough and introduces the element of stress. Throughout the exercise, Cadets encounter physical and mental obstacles that challenge them as a person, a Cadet and a leader. Cadets also will be introduced to the Warrior Ethos, the code by which Soldiers live.

Phase 3: Future Leader

This portion of training, the final few days of the course, introduces Cadets to the social aspect of the Army. Final briefings are conducted, as well as a family day in conjunction with a Cadet-run graduation ceremony where all are welcome to attend.

Cadets will clean and turn in equipment. Perhaps most importantly, they will receive final feedback and assessments, including a personal development plan for future use.

About author View all posts

ciet.editor

Leave a Reply