16 August 2007

BOLC II vs. LDAC: Part 2 -Leadership positions and cadre relationship.

The second edition of this series (I can call it that now there are two of them) will regard leadership positions and evaluations and the relationship to cadre.

Evaluations have a lot in common to evaluations in ROTC. The sheet is almost exactly like a blue card. In this case you don't write a yellow card, you just get counseled. There are two types of leadership evaluations. The first kind is a platoon leadership position. The second is by event.

Platoon leadership evaluations are a week in length and include the student first sergeant, platoon leader, platoon sergeant, and squad leaders. Unlike LDAC there is no student CO. The biggest difference between these positions and their counterparts at LDAC other than length is the fact that you can be fired. If you screw up you are removed from command and get an unsatisfactory rating. It has happened once in my platoon. One of the SLs reported that one of her squad members was not present at first formation. He was in fact on CQ duty (something she should have known). Apparently if this happens you will get additional chances to fix yourself later.

The second type of position is a by event position. For instance next week my platoon is the duty platoon for the qualification range. This means that we provide the OIC and a LT to fill the position of NCOIC. These people are responsible for planning the entire range.

I don't know how counciling works out. My first scheduled duty position at the moment is PSG in week 5. More later.

In regards to our relationship as students with the cadre. It is much less formal (at least in my platoon) then in LDAC. At LDAC the cadre are evaluators. They are there to teach but mostly to evaluate and this means that their relationship to you is fialry standoffish to ensure that there is no appearance of favoritism. Here the cadre are considered mentors, they want to get to know you and to help you become better officers. Ideally each platoon gets a CPT or MAJ who is the platoon mentor. Then you have an E7 who is essentially the PSG but is also there to teach and coach. Each platoon is also supposed to have 3 to 4 E6s who will mentor individual squads. My platoon only has one squad mentor, but it's cool because he kicks ass.

The atmosphere that this creates is really great. The NCOs treat you with all the respect due to your rank but it is explicitly clear that you are there to be trained by them. Any one who gets it in their head that they are in charge is quickly corrected. It hasn't happened hear but it was made quite clear not to even let the thought into your head.

That is all for now.

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