FORT SHAFTER, Hawaii -- Thirty-two top performing company-grade officers, warrant officers and non-commissioned officers at the Joint and Multinational Level, from all services across the Pacific region, including 1 Department of the Army (DA) Civilian, completed the 8th Theater Sustainment Command's Phase I of the Young Alaka'i (YA) Leader Development Program 16-02 September 17.

Alaka'i is the Hawaiian value of leadership used to describe one who leads by example with the initiative and strength of character to continually seek to grow and gain the trust of others.

"This curriculum (Young Alaka'i) provided these students with the tools and information required to thrive in the joint and multinational communities with increasingly strategic mission requirements, and a better understanding of our profession of arms in the Pacific Region," said Maj. Gen. Susan Davidson, commanding general of the 8th TSC, during the Phase I commemoration ceremony at the U.S.S. Bowfin on 17 September.

Young Alaka'i's first phase was a packed nine-day academic phase emphasizing teamwork throughout its interactive sessions and included engaging discussions about military leadership, mission command, critical and strategic thinking, service component strategies and objectives with special emphasis on the roles, mission capabilities, limitations and partnerships in the Pacific.

"I wish I could have attended a course like this when I was on active duty," said Ed Schober, an Eighth Army Exercise Planner, who served in the U.S. Army for over 20 years, and is the YA's first DA Civilian.

Schober said that this curriculum opened his eyes even more to understanding the complexities in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region and that he learned a lot from just talking with his joint and international service member classmates.

Young Alaka'i is targeted toward top-performing, company-grade officers, warrant officers and non-commissioned officers at the Joint and Multinational Level.

"This training has helped me better understand the complexities we face in the Pacific region," said Maj. Yongjin Lee, Republic of Korea (ROK) Armed Forces. "Hearing from the speakers about solving problems has given me new tools to use in the future."

One half of the cohort attended the Asia Pacific Orientation Course provided by the Center for Strategic and International Studies and the East-West Center.

"The 8th TSC's Young Alaka'i Leadership program at the East-West Center is a partnership built on shared visions of regional peace", said Dr. Scott MacLeod, Director of Leadership Programs at the East -- West Center. "Our common missions of developing strategic leaders: people, who in whatever role they take carry out informed effective action."

The plan for Phase II is for students to travel to Washington, D.C. in November and be immersed in regional and national strategy at selected venues in the Pacific and the national capital region.
"The second phase continues the investment in these leaders, to expose them at the national level," said Cpt. John Tansioco of the 8th TSC Commander's Initiative Group.

Tansioco went on to say that the cohort will hear from Mr. Chris Fussell, a partner at The McChrystal Group, and co-author of the book "Team of Teams" and Mr. David Maxwell, Associate Director for the Center for Security Studies at Georgetown University.

For more information on upcoming iterations of the Young Alaka'I program, contact the Young Alaka'I program manager Capt. Monica Rivera at monica.i.rivera4.mil@mail.mil for more information. Applicants must have their chain of command's endorsement to attend. Coverage of the program will also be found on the 8TH TSC Website at https://www.army.mil/8thtsc, www.facebook.com/8thTSC and on twitter at https://twitter.com/8thTSC.