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The defense institute of security assistance management returns to Romania after nine years!

October 2005, the Defense Institute of Security Assistance Management (DISAM) successfully returned to Romania more than nine years after initially introducing United States Security Assistance Programs to the country's Ministry of National Defense in 1996.

DISAM, in cooperation with the Romanian Ministry of National Defense (RO MoND) and the U.S. Office of Defense Cooperation in Bucharest (ODC Bucharest), conducted several mobile education and training (MET) seminars. The classes focused on current U.S. policy and procedures of Security Cooperation Programs available to the RO MoND both in regards to procuring and sustaining U.S. defense articles as well as services. All of the DISAM MET events were held in Bucharest, the capital city of Romania.

Romania, with its strategic location and status as the largest, most populous country in its region, has been and continues to be a major contributor to stability in Southeast Europe and other parts of the world. Romania joined the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) in the March of 2004 and has actively supported the United States and NATO through significant participation in the allied military presence in Bosnia and Kosovo, in Afghanistan as part of Operation Enduring Freedom, and in Iraq as part of Operation Iraqi Freedom.

Working closely with the Romanian Ministry of National Defense, the Office of Defense Cooperation in Bucharest plays a major role in balancing and supporting the needs of the RO MoND while adhering to U.S. foreign policy objectives. Security cooperation activities within ODC Bucharest are designed to build upon an already extraordinary defense relationship between Romania and the United States. They are designed to develop high leverage Romanian military capabilities that are modern, professional, deployable and affordable as well as interoperable with U.S. forces and NATO forces. Furthermore, they are designed to provide U.S. forces with peacetime and contingency access as well as in route infrastructure. The ODC in Bucharest is also working to increase the scope of the training program by including more Expanded-International Military Education and Training (E-IMET) courses. As a result, this can lead to additional representatives being trained from all ministries involved in Romanian national defense thus helping to spur their reform and transformation process.

With the purpose of furthering these objectives, DISAM was invited by the Romanian Ministry of National Defense in coordination with ODC Bucharest to return to Romania with the goal of educating current executives and managers of RO MoND and its military in present day U.S. policies, procedures and programs available through various U.S. State Department Security Cooperation programs. Specific Security Cooperation programs to be addressed included Foreign Military Sales (FMS), Foreign Military Financing (FMF) and International Military Education and Training (IMET) programs. DISAM, eager to meet the challenge, simultaneously conducted three separate MET courses during a two week period. The courses were directed to Senior Foreign Purchaser Executives, Foreign Purchaser Managers and those involved with Training Management functions within the RO MoND. The knowledge exchanged between students and instructors during DISAM's stay in Romania proved to be extremely meaningful and well received by both sides.

The DISAM Romanian MET was lead by Ms. Virginia Caudill, Director of Management Studies at DISAM. Additional instructors from DISAM were Mr. Robert Hanseman, Mr. Frank Campanell, Mr. Donald McCormick and Mr. Aaron Prince. The team also was enhanced by the inclusion of Mr. Ronald Elliott from the Naval Education and Training Security Assistance Field Activity (NETSAFA).

The first week of training consisted of two DISAM courses which ran consecutively; the Security Assistance Management Executive Foreign Purchaser Planning and Resource Management course (SAM-FE) as well as the Security Assistance Management Foreign Purchaser Planning and Resource Management course (SAM-F). Both of these courses were taught at The Palace of the National Military Center in Bucharest. The second week of instruction continued the SAM-F course with the addition of the DISAM Security Assistance Management International Training Management course (SAM-IT). The SAM-IT course was conducted across the city in the Human Resources Management Directorate (HRMD) at the Romanian Ministry of National Defense.

Beginning Monday, October 10, 2005, the SAM-F course commenced with an opening ceremony and welcoming remarks by Mr. Drago. Gabriel Ghercioiu, Advisor to the Secretary of State from the Romania Ministry of National Defense, Department for Defense Policy and Ms. Virginia Caudill of DISAM. The course lasted a full two weeks and was attended by thirty-three students who are directly involved in the functions and management of Romania's military international sales program. The curriculum included planning and resource processes for requirements generation, budgeting, acquisition and sustainment within a security cooperation relationship with the United States. This course was presented at a detailed level demonstrating how to manage and carry out day to day responsibilities. Among the specific topics discussed were:

* FMS process,

* Logistics support,

* Requisition processing,

* Transportation,

* Financial management, and

* Information gathering through the Security Cooperation Information Portal (SCIP).

The course also included several real world exercises for the students to complete. Furthermore, Lieutenant Colonel Michael Hawn, Deputy Chief of ODC Bucharest, presented the class with an overview of the ODC office and their responsibilities. The course ended the following Friday with closing remarks by Ms. Monica Mirela Malcoci, Deputy Director of the Defense Integrated Planning Directorate for RO MoND and distinguished alumni of the DISAM SAM-F March 2005 resident course. Presentation of student diplomas were made by Ms. Monica Malcoci, Ms. Virginia Caudill and Mr. Robert Hanseman with the assistance of Ms. Anca Ionescu from the ODC Bucharest office.

The SAM-FE course began Tuesday, October 11, 2005 with an opening ceremony conducted by Mr. Drago. Gabriel Ghercioiu. Opening remarks were given by Mr. Drago. Gabriel Ghercioiu and Ms. Virginia Caudill. The eight students attending this class consisted of senior military and civilian leaders of the RO MoND involved in the oversight, integration and management of the security cooperation and defense sales processes for Romania. The focus of the SAM-FE course dealt with addressing the legal requirements and processes for FMS and foreign military financing (FMF) in order to incorporate Romania's defense requirements into the U.S. FMS system for effective planning and program management. Other topics of discussion included overviews of FMS and FMF acquisition rules within U.S. DoD procedures, logistics and sustainment support, and financial management of international military sales. The three day course concluded on Thursday with a graduation ceremony, presentation of student diplomas, and remarks by Ms. Virginia Caudill.

Finally, the SAM-IT course began the second week on Tuesday, October 18, 2005, with an opening ceremony headed by Commander Ene Enache, Deputy Director of the Human Resources Management Directorate for the Romanian Ministry of National Defense. Welcoming remarks were made by Commander Enache and Mr. Aaron Prince of DISAM. The SAM-IT course was attended by various military officers of Romania's Human Resources Management Directorate as well as Romania's Military Department Staffs. The course centered on how to effectively manage a Training Program established with the United States Military through:

* International Military Education and Training;

* Foreign Military Sales;

* Foreign Military Financing; and

* Other programs associated with the U.S. Department of Defense and Security Cooperation.

Topics covered during the class included developing and managing a successful Training Program, Student Administration as well as Automation Tools available to the Training Manager. Students were given access to the International Security Assistance Network (I-SAN) and shown how to use the International Training Management System (I-TMS) computer program (developed at DISAM). Students, through hands-on computer use, learned how to operate I-TMS in conjunction with the I-SAN allowing them to view the Standardized Training List (STL) containing the most upto-date training programs, to include Security Cooperation Programs, Counter Terrorism Fellowship Programs, and Air Force Aviation Leadership Programs, among others, which are scheduled with the various U.S. Military Services. In addition, students learned how to use the I-TMS program to search through the Training Military Articles and Services Listing (MASL) finding information on courses offered to foreign countries by the U.S. Military Services. The RO MoND Training Managers, now empowered with the most current status of their training program and the ability to research course information on their own, can make effective and timely decisions concerning their training program while enhancing the working relationship between the RO MoND and ODC Bucharest. Other automation tools designed to aid the training manager in the performance their job were presented to the class included:

* International Training Management web site;

* International Security Assistance Network Web (I-SAN Web); and

* DISAM's International Military Student Pre-Departure Briefing CD.

The course ended on Friday, October 21, 2005 with a graduation ceremony, distribution of student diplomas and commencement addresses by Commander Enache and Mr. Aaron Prince.

The DISAM MET was not all work and no play. In addition to conducting the various training courses, team members were able to experience some of the incredible sights and sounds that Romania and Bucharest has to offer. If you find yourself lucky enough to have the opportunity to visit this great country, some of the highlights it has to offer are:

* First and foremost the very warm and friendly people of Romania;

* The beautiful Pele. Castle, summer residence of King Carol I, started in 1873;

* Pelisor Castle, a separate castle for King Carol's nephew and his wife;

* Bran Castle in Transylvania, built in for defense against the Turks;

* The Romanian Athenaeum which houses the "George Enescu" Philharmonic Orchestra;

* The Bucharest National Opera House, where we saw the opera "Nabucco";

* Palace of Parliament, the world's second largest building in terms of surface area built by Romania's former communist leader Nicolae Ceau.escu;

* Museum of the Romanian Peasant displaying Romania's largest collection of folklore treasures; and

* A multitude of fabulous restaurants and coffee houses in which to socialize.

DISAM would like to extend our appreciation to the ODC Bucharest office for their assistance during our stay in Romania. In particular, DISAM would like to acknowledge Ms. Anca Ionescu, Foreign Service National, Program Assistant, FMF and MET Coordinator for ODC Bucharest, as well as a Distinguished Alumni of DISAM's resident SAM-F course, March 2005, for her phenomenal work in supporting this mission. The enormous success of the DISAM Romania MET was due, in a large part, to the extraordinary efforts and professionalism displayed by Ms. Ionescu. She singlehandedly coordinated all of the requirements needed for this training opportunity to take place; working as liaison between RO MoND, DISAM, Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA), Air Force Security Assistance Training Squadron (AFSAT) and other government organizations, overseeing the creation and signing of the Letter of Agreement (LOA), obtaining FMF funding, scheduling classrooms and equipment, handling shipment of course materials, hotel reservations and travel arrangements for team members plus many other essential tasks. She also ensured that she was present for the beginning of each course of instruction and at the closing ceremonies. A special thank-you goes to Ms. Anca Ionescu from the DISAM team.

Furthermore, DISAM commends all of the graduates of the SAM-FE, SAM-F and SAM-IT courses taught during this MET. Each student was professional, eager to learn and quickly grasped the concepts taught during the courses. All are highly deserving of their DISAM Diploma and acceptance into the DISAM family. With any luck, it will not be another nine years before DISAM has the opportunity to return to the magnificent country of Romania, its people, the professionals of the Romanian Ministry of National Defense and ODC Bucharest. Thank-you for a unique and very rewarding experience.

About the Author

Mr. Aaron M. Prince is an instructor at the Defense Institute of Security Assistance Management and one of the programmers for the Training Management System software. He has been at DISAM since February 2001 and a civilian employee of the U.S. Department of Defense since 1990. He has a Bachelor of Science Degree in Marketing from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.

Aaron M. Prince Defense Institute of Security Assistance Management
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Article Details
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Title Annotation:education and training
Author:Prince, Aaron M.
Publication:DISAM Journal
Geographic Code:4EXRO
Date:Sep 22, 2005
Words:1974
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