The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines a profession as the whole body of persons engaged in a calling, vocation or employment requiring specialized knowledge and often long and intensive academic preparation.

To better prepare for the national security challenges of today and beyond 2020, the Army's Training and Doctrine Command is leading an introspective Army-wide assessment of the Army Profession. The assessment is examining the Army's strengths and weaknesses and evaluating the Army's characteristics as a profession.

This initiative, the Army Profession Campaign, serves to inspire and engage Soldiers and Civilians in professional dialogue to make the profession stronger. By the end of this year, the findings and recommendations for changes in doctrine, organization, training, materiel, leadership, personnel and facilities (DOTMLPF) will be outlined and some will be put into motion by the Army. This article will discuss some of the basic definitions and characteristics of the Army Profession as currently laid out in the October 2011 draft TRADOC pamphlet, Army Profession, produced by the Center for the Army Profession and Ethic, and as it relates to the Army's Capabilities Integration Center at Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Va.

As defined in the aforementioned TRADOC pamphlet, the Army Profession is a vocation comprised of experts certified in the ethical design, generation, support, and application of land combat power, serving under civilian authority, and entrusted to defend the Constitution.

The Army Profession has two complementary and mutually supporting components - the Army Profession of Arms and the Army Civilian Corps. The Army Profession of Arms is composed of uniformed members of the profession skilled in the art of warfare. The Army Civilian Corps is composed of all non-uniformed members of the profession working for the Department of the Army. The TRADOC pamphlet states that the Army Profession distinguishes itself as a profession by its essential characteristics of trustworthiness, military expertise, esprit de corps, honorable service and stewardship of the profession.

One proud and contributing member of the Army Profession is The Army Capabilities Integration Center. The ARCIC, as part of the TRADOC team, is responsible for developing, evaluating and integrating concepts, requirements and solutions for the Army across DOTMLPF, warfighting functions and formations to provide Soldiers and units the capabilities needed to support combatant commanders. ARCIC has Army professionals representing both components of the Army Profession and is working to achieve the profession's essential characteristics.

ARCIC strives to exemplify the Army Profession's essential characteristics through a professional work ethic, duty and commitment to the mission, and by living the standard of taking care of Soldiers, Families and Civilians. ARCIC's workforce consists of a distinguished talent pool of Soldiers and Civilians, close to half of which are former active-duty servicemembers.

ARCIC earns and maintains the trust of Army civilian and military leaders through myriad contributions. From providing a conceptual vision for the Army, working key Force Design/Force Mix initiatives for the secretary and chief of staff of the Army, teaming with joint and multinational partners, and developing real-time solutions to support deployed commanders and Soldiers; the Soldiers and Civilians in ARCIC have also helped the nation maintain its overall trust in the Army's capabilities and readiness.

With its military expertise, ARCIC endeavors to help the chief of staff of the Army with ideas for the Army of 2020. ARCIC contributed to the Army vice chief of staff's capability portfolio reviews; completed an officer grade plate review; developed a way-ahead to connect Soldiers across the battlefield leveraging digital technologies; and led the development of a new agile capabilities lifecycle process impacting rapid developments and acquisitions. The ARCIC team works diligently to determine a broad variety of critical but affordable warfighting capabilities. Esprit de corps is evident by the high morale within ARCIC and a can-do spirit that drives the approach to all emerging and enduring roles and missions.

Recognizing the honorable service provided by such a dedicated workforce is important to maintaining part of the profession. The ARCIC director recently presented one ARCIC employee with a 45-year service award and two employees with 40-year service awards. In fact, throughout the last two years, civilian employees have been awarded hundreds of honorary and performance awards. Servicemembers are equally distinguished in their own right. ARCIC is also a recipient of the 2010 Dr. Wilbur B. Payne Memorial Award for excellence in analysis by a large group. Overall, this represents a well-earned recognition by an experienced team of Army professionals.

Finally, stewardship of the profession is best demonstrated by how ARCIC works to capitalize and implement cost-cutting efficiency measures contained in the Decker-Wagner acquisition reform and other reports. ARCIC has been at the forefront of trying to establish an enhanced cost-benefit capability at the TRADOC's Centers of Excellence designed to truly offer the Army senior leadership informed cost benefit recommendations in the emerging dept-impacted budget environment.

Through its Brigade Modernization Command at Fort Bliss, Texas, ARCIC is also leading the Network Integration Evaluation designed to integrate and mature the Army's tactical network which is a key element of the Army's emerging modernization strategy. The NIE is designed in part to develop agile capabilities with an eye on stewardship of government resources. This is achieved through early partnering with industry resulting in some shared costs and also by shortening development timelines thereby bringing costs down. In a new way, this agile capabilities lifecycle process allows the Army to make cost-informed acquisitions of key network and other capabilities.

As the Army moves forward to characterize and define the vocation of the Army Profession and the Army Profession of Arms, ARCIC moves in unison as an example of what the Army means by a professional organization poised and ready to contribute to the Army, today and tomorrow. If the past is any indicator, ARCIC will continue to pave the way at the forefront of the Army Profession with trustworthiness, military expertise, esprit de corps, honorable service and stewardship of the profession.

Page last updated Tue December 6th, 2011 at 00:00