Back to school
March 16, 2013
FORT CARSON, Colo. -- The Raider Brigade officially opened "Raider University" during a ceremony March 8 at the Gateway Theater on Camp Buehring, Kuwait.
Senior leadership across the brigade gathered to discuss the future of the training program introduced by Col. Joel Tyler, commander, 1st Armored Brigade Combat Team, 4th Infantry Division.
"Raider University is our term for professional development," Tyler said. "I love this Army, this nation and our profession, and when someone doesn't see the value in it I take it personally."
The program's central theme is operational adaptability, which includes the improvement of critical thinking skills, comfort with ambiguity and decentralization, willingness to accept prudent risks, making sound rapid adjustments from continuous assessments, building resilient Soldiers and cohesive teams, mastering the operational art and recognizing the human aspects of conflict and war.
"What makes us strong is the adaptability of our American Soldiers," Tyler said.
Tyler and Command Sgt. Maj. Edison Rebuck, senior enlisted leader, 1st ABCT, discussed the idea of putting together a program to professionally develop Raider Soldiers during the brigade's rotation to the National Training Center, Fort Irwin, Calif., last year.
During the opening ceremony Rebuck explained how the implementation of the program would train more adaptive Soldiers of the future for the brigade and the Army.
"We have to spend as much time, sweat and ability in developing our brains as we do physically training ourselves," Rebuck said to the audience of leaders gathered at the Gateway Theater.
The lead planner for Raider University, Maj. Robert Walker, brigade fire support officer, 1st ABCT, laid out the agenda of the program to the leadership of the brigade during his presentation and emphasized the importance of thinking "outside the box."
"We really want you (Raider Brigade leaders) to get out of the mindset of typical military training, reach down into your units and access the knowledge made available by our Soldiers," Walker said.
Walker challenged Raider University attendees to tap into the resources available within their units and urged the leaders to take this adaptive mindset and utilize it to develop junior brigade Soldiers into the future leaders of the Army.
"My take away from the Raider University presentation is a command led opportunity to think about our jobs and processes in a different way...in a way to focus our efforts on taking everyday problems or historical missteps and finding pointed means for overcoming them through increased leader and Soldier dialogue on adaptability at all levels," said 2nd Lt. Blake Ritchey, platoon leader, Company C, 1st Special Troops Battalion, 1st ABCT.
Raider University offers Soldiers and leaders the unique opportunity to train and professionally develop themselves in a time of fiscal constraint at no cost to the Soldier through innovative means available within their units.