By Whitney Allen
The first day in the field for the 2nd Regiment of the Leader’s Training Course was spent at the Team Development Course. Cadets were divided into squads and presented with various obstacles to complete. It is not by accident that this course is in the beginning of their training.
The objective of this course is to work on team building, Master Sergeant Mike Tanner said.
“This will set the groundwork for more collaborative exercises,” Tanner said.
In the obstacle titled ‘Cliffhanger’, the drill sergeant describes a scenario to the Cadets. They must cross a bridge with all of their team members and an ammunition box. But the bridge is not fully intact. The Cadets must navigate over what’s left of the bridge, and then scale a wall without touching the ground.
Cadets were given thirty minutes to complete the challenge.
A squad leader is assigned for each event and he or she is expected to conduct the planning and execution of the obstacle.
While leadership comes naturally to some, others admit there is room for improvement.
Cadet Israel Rivera of University of Puerto Rico was in a squad that successfully completed the obstacle. Although Rivera wasn’t the assigned squad leader, he took on a leadership role during the exercise.
“I took control of the situation; we only had a set amount of time,” Rivera said.
During the exercise the Cadet’s cadre leader observes their planning and execution. At the conclusion of the obstacle, the Cadets and their leader discuss what happened and what could have improved.
Addison Piggott from the University of Memphis was a squad leader for one of the exercises. Piggott said one of the biggest challenges for him was to oversee the planning to the end.
Piggott said if he were presented with the opportunity to be a squad leader again, he would take a different approach. “I would
facilitate the planning more strictly so we could use our time more wisely,” Piggott said.
The cadets will use the leadership and teamwork skills and trust built here throughout their summer training.