July 29, 2009

Warrrant Officer Candidates give back to community

By Staff Sgt. Lauren Martin
Virginia Army National Guard

BLACKSTONE, Va. — Warrant Officer Candidates from the 3rd Battalion, 183rd Regional Training Institute’s Warrant Officer Candidate School assisted in a community service project July 25 at Blackstone Primary School in Blackstone. Candidates spent a half day spreading fresh mulch and pulling weeds in four different playground areas in preparation for the new school year. 

  Warrant Officer Candidate community service

Warrant Officer Candidates work to spread mulch in the playground areas at Blackstone Primary School in Blackstone, Va., July 25. (Photo by Staff Sgt. Lauren Martin, Virginia Army National Guard)

 

The outreach project was designed to help Blackstone Primary School students and improve the appearance around the school. It was chosen because of its importance to the community of Blackstone and the schoolchildren. Candidates wanted to make a positive impact on the children of the school and contribute to the community where the Regional Training Institute is located. 

The candidates were tasked to develop a community outreach project early in their training cycle. As they researched possible projects, they noticed that the school playground was in need of some work and planned their project around the need.

  Warrant Officer Candidate community service

The Warrant Officer Candidates pulled weeds and spread mulch in four different playground areas in preparation for the new school year. (Photo by Staff Sgt. Lauren Martin, Virgnina Army National Guard)

Warrant Officer Candidate William Bayse, projects officer for the class, said, “Being in the National Guard, we have a state and local mission; part of our job as a citizen Soldier is to assist our communities not only in emergency situations, but also in day-to-day community projects.” 
This project gave the candidates an opportunity to not only develop a project that had a tangible benefit to the local community and its younger citizens but, to also work with local government officials.

According to Chief Warrant Officer 3 Karl Klugman, senior TAC officer for the 183rd Regional Training Institute Warrant Officer Candidate program, the community service project “not only builds esprit de corps but gives the candidates a sense of being part of the community, and it is also the end of Phase II for them.” All 13 candidates had an active role in planning and executing the community service project. 

The Warrant Officer Candidate School program trains enlisted Soldiers to become Warrant Officers. According to the Warrant Officer Career College website, “the school emphasizes officer roles and responsibilities more, and individual activities less. The goal is to provide candidates the foundation they need to succeed as Warrant Officers in a changing Army, and to be adaptable to the ever increasing challenges of the operational environment.”

Candidates have the option to attend the full course at Fort Rucker, Ala., or attend a Regional Training Institute course. The Regional Training Institute course is divided into three phases with Phase I being Distance Learning and Phase II being conducted at a Regional Training Institute.  Phase III is then conducted at either Camp Atterbury, Ind., or Fort McClellan, Ala. 

 

All 13 Candidates planned this event with the idea of not only having a direct impact on the community, but on the children of Blackstone. (Photo by Staff Sgt. Lauren Martin, Virgnina Army National Guard)

Phase III of the training for the current Warrant Officer Candidate School class is scheduled for Aug. 1-15 at Camp Atterbury, Ind. Upon successful completion of Phase III, the candidates will be appointed as warrant officers in either the Virginia or North Carolina Army National Guard.

If you are interested in learning more about the Warrant Officer Candidate School program or becoming a Warrant Officer, please contact Chief Warrant Officer 3 James Robison at james.j.robison@us.army.mil or Chief Warrant Officer 3 Karl Klugman at karl.klugman@us.army.mil

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