Sunday, August 31, 2008

Instructor Training Course Graduations

A key component in building a military capable of self-sustainment in training is to develop qualified instructors. One the problems with doing so in an army with virtually no experience like the new (or "reformed" -- depending on one's view) Armed Forces of Liberia is the wholesale absence of experienced soldiers and the lack of any existing institution around them. To fix this problem we negotiated with both contractors to develop a program of instruction to come up with a qualifying course for "instructors" for the AFL. Essentially, the purpose of the course was to train a cadre of potential instructors in the methodologies of classroom and field instruction.

We held the first class at Camp Ware during a basic training. The next one was completed largely at the Barclay Training Center in Monrovia. The completion of that class raised the number of "instructor qualified) AFL troops from 18 to 52, as at the BTC were were able to double the size of the class (minus two who did not graduate). Subsequent classes will raise the total to over 100 before DynCorp completes all initial entry training before the close of 2008.

{April 4th, 2008: Lieutenant Colonel Chris Wyatt congratulates graduates during the ITC graduation ceremony at Camp Sandee S. Ware, near Careysburg, Liberia}

{May 30th, 2008: Lieutenant Colonel Chris Wyatt addresses graduates during the ITC graduation ceremony at the Barclay Training Center, Monrovia, Liberia}

On May 30th, 2008 I was the guest speaker at the second ITC graduation. I used the I focused on the importance of the skills the soldiers learned in the class and how they can apply them to training within their units. I was reasonably satisfied with the outcome of this course. Although we did not graduate all 36 students, it was nonetheless a successful class. As is now the norm we included junior enlisted, non-commissioned officers and commissioned officers in the class to develop professional trainers across the ranks.

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