DETROIT (Jan. 15, 2016) -- The U.S. Army Materiel Command seeks to add to its civilian ranks, and its major subordinate command, the TACOM Life Cycle Management Command (LCMC), took to the 2016 North American International Auto Show here Jan. 13 to help spread the word.
The TACOM LCMC Deputy Chief of Staff for Human Capital team (G1) hosted "Academia Day" adjacent to the U.S. Army exhibit at the auto show to provide undergraduate and graduate career counselors and placement professionals with information on federal careers. This is the third such event held in support of the Army Materiel Command's 1,000 Intern program, which seeks to bolster the Army civilian workforce.
According to Tim Tarczynkski, who leads the TACOM LCMC G1 team, 50 career placement professionals representing 25 academic institutions hailing from Michigan, Ohio and Indiana attended. "We are very pleased with the turn out," he said. "We are grateful so many braved the bitter cold to travel to Detroit to learn more about federal civilian career opportunities within the Army Materiel Command.
"Creating this dialogue with colleges and universities is very important," he continued. We want to develop strong relationships with those guiding students into careers so they understand the Army is a terrific place to work, develop, grow and excel."
Gen. Dennis L. Via, AMC commanding general, inaugurated the1,000 Intern initiative in 2015 to spark interest in federal service and infuse the Army with new, innovative civilian talent -- to the tune of 1,000 interns per year over five years. AMC puts a priority on developing adaptive Army leaders, and this push to attract new civilians to service is aligned with the U.S. Secretary of Defense's effort to attract the best talent to DoD and foster innovation.
Efforts exceeded expectations last year, in that more than 1,200 interns were hired AMCwide, with 153 assigned to TACOM, which is headquartered in Warren, Mich., on the historic Detroit Arsenal.
TACOM LCMC Commander Maj. Gen. Gwen Bingham welcomed the representatives from academia and explained federal service is a "noble calling." She spoke of the rich ties the Army shares with Detroit and the automotive industry, dating back to the 1940s, and explained AMC's mission in very simple terms. "If a Soldier drives it, flies it, wears it, shoots it, communicates with it or eats it, AMC provides it. We are very proud of that fact," she emphasized.
Lisha H. Adams, Gen. Via's executive deputy, attended the TACOM-hosted event, delivering the keynote address. She is AMC's top civilian, equivalent to a three-star general. Citing her own personal experience beginning her Army civilian career as a GS-5 intern more than 30 years ago, she shared it has been very gratifying to serve the country and the military as a civilian. "The Army has been a great place for me to work," she said, "and public service equals good citizenship."
Adams explained AMC "commands the (Army's) global supply chain." She noted that if AMC were compared to Fortune 500 companies with similar missions, it would rank between FedEx and Johnson Controls.
AMC's 63,000-strong workforce includes highly skilled and uniquely qualified professionals, many of whom are one-of-a-kind second-and third-generation industrial artisans. No organization in the world can match their skills. Adams went on to say while AMC's workforce is highly skilled and specialized, approximately 20 percent of its civilians are currently eligible to retire. To that end, she outlined the 30-plus civilian career programs AMC seeks to infuse with new talent.
Adams concluded her remarks by acknowledging TACOM LCMC leaders who, like her, also began their respective federal careers as interns, including Magid Athnasios, Tank-Automotive Research, Development and Engineering Center executive director for Systems Integration and Engineering; Marion Whicker, TACOM LCMC deputy chief of staff; David Holm, TACOM LCMC director of Cost and Systems Analysis; and TACOM G1's Tarczynski.
"It was a pleasure for all four of us to have the opportunity to discuss with our partners in academia our respective careers in the government," said Whicker. "We all started as interns, but quickly realized that the opportunities in federal service are limitless, and we could follow many different career paths."