Staff Sgt. Arter E. Sweatman reclassified from preventive medicine into the acquisition, logistics and technology career field and reported to the Army Contracting Command -- Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md., in May 2013 as a contract specialist. Since his arrival at ACC-APG, he's been promoted to staff sergeant and assigned to the Tenant/Garrison Division.

"I like contracting and I'm glad I made the switch," said the Georgia native. "The contracting career field is more in the direction of what I want to do and it gives me the opportunity to build a solid foundation. The opportunities are amazing!"

Sweatman joined the Army in 2008 after attending Georgia Southern University in Statesboro, Ga., as a chemistry major. In line with his major, he sought a medical military occupational specialty with the Army but was told the only available MOS was in preventive medicine. He spent the next four years as a preventive medicine specialist and began exploring other opportunities. He read about becoming a 51C contract specialist on the ACC website and "I knew that's what I wanted to do," he declared.

"I was encouraged by my leadership to submit a reclassification packet," said the self-proclaimed Air Force brat. "I met the requirements such as good noncommissioned officer evaluation reports, high GT (general technical) score, and height and weight standards."

Sweatman was notified of his acceptance while at Fort Huachuca, Ariz., participating in the 2012 Armed Forces Soccer Championship. He has been selected for the All-Army Soccer Team for the past four years.

"I was excited when told that my reclassification was approved," recalled Sweatman. "I reenlisted for five years and reported to Lackland Air Force Base in San Antonio, Tex., for training. I finished the course with a 94 grade point average."

During the course, Sweatman was instructed on the Federal Acquisition Regulation and learned how to use Procurement Desktop-Defense, an automated procurement system.

"The school provided real-life contracting simulations to prepare me for my new career," he said.

As a new contract specialist, Sweatman was assigned a civilian mentor.

According to his mentor, Kirstin Hazlewood, contract specialist, "Sweatman is a very fast learner and he has already completed an action on his own. He is very helpful and a real asset to our division."