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Wow! This year's ENFORCE was everything that was promised and more. The conference featured two firsts: the inaugural Engineer Warrant Officer of the Year Award (see article on page 21) and the inaugural Council of Engineer Warrant Officers. I'm happy to report that 29 warrant officers attended our first Warrant Officer Council and information briefings.

The morning session included briefings from the Council members and a comprehensive Warrant Officer Education update by CW4 Mark Pitsenbarger of the Army Leader Development Office (ALDO). The afternoon session consisted of professionally facilitated discussions led by CW5 Mark Jensen, Command Chief Warrant Officer of the Kansas Army National Guard. The Council deliberated four main issues, and the recommendations are in various stages of implementation. The Council--

* Established a multicomponent recruiting committee to create a professional trifold advertisement for the 210A and 215D accessions program. Thanks to WO1 Dennis Connor of the United States Army Reserve for developing the first draft. The United States Army Recruiting Command has agreed to work with the Engineer School to fund the trifold as part of a pilot test for warrant officer recruiting.

* Voted to recommend to the Commandant that MOS 210A be renamed Construction Engineering Technician to formally recognize the change in mission requirements for this diverse MOS. These requirements, which support modularity and are driven by FM 3-0, Stability and Support Operations, include support of vertical platoons, survey and design teams/detachments, engineer brigades, maneuver enhancement brigades (MEBs), divisions, and corps.

* Will recommend to the Commandant that MOS 215D be renamed Geospatial Engineering Technician to better reflect the core mission of geospatial warrant officers and align this warrant officer MOS with its NCO feeder MOS, Geospatial Engineer.

* Validated the proposed change to the standards of grade for MOS 210A to reflect the changes in mission requirements being executed in both training and assignments of 210As.

CW4 Pitsenbarger provided a very timely update to the Warrant Officer Council that included the current status on the Warrant Officer Staff Course (WOSC) and Warrant Officer Senior Staff Course (WOSSC) redesigns. The redesigned WOSC, which was implemented in January 2008, will expand to a 5-week course in FY11 and include a revamped distributed learning (dL) phase. In addition, a CW4 technical functional course will be added as part of the WOSC. Army funding for development of the new 210A and 215D technical functional courses has been approved, and the Engineer School will soon receive the first year's funding allotment. The WOSSC, the capstone Professional Military Education (PME) for CW5s, has been increased from 2 to 4 weeks with a dL portion as well. The first pilot class will be conducted this summer, with final implementation in FY11.

Training experts at the Directorate of Training and Leader Development, led by CW4 Phil Mowatt, LTC Phillip Kaufmann, and Dr. Troy Messer, have received the Commandant's approval and support for the expansion of the 210A Warrant Officer Basic Course from 12 weeks to 26 weeks. This extraordinary effort, if approved by TRADOC, will fundamentally change both what we train and how we train our Construction Engineering Technicians. The submission of this program of instruction (POI) change addresses a shift in strategy for integrating 210A warrant officers in support of modularity, doctrine, and standards of grade changes. The new course will bridge the technical competency gap created under modularity and FM 3-0. More to follow as the staffing process continues with this major Engineer School initiative.

While the ongoing improvements in both leader and technical training at the institutional level are impressive, PME alone will not be enough to fully Breed the Best Leaders or Build Great Engineers. As the commandant stated, "Great leaders improve on the areas they are weak in." I challenge you to recognize your weaknesses and use the resources at your disposal to improve your leadership abilities and technical competency. Start and/or complete your civilian education with an engineering emphasis, enroll in dL courses, or complete certification courses related to your warrant officer specialty. Take the Commandant's challenge, and search out engineering firms at your duty station and develop training relationships--sabbaticals--for as little as 30 days or as long as 90 days, working with industry. Talk to your commander and get it started--today. Keep your technological edge--it's what makes you a warrant officer! Stay safe. Essayons!

Chief Warrant Officer Five Robert K. Lamphear

Regimental Chief Warrant Officer
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Author:Lamphear, Robert K.
Publication:Engineer: The Professional Bulletin for Army Engineers
Article Type:Conference news
Date:May 1, 2009
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