REDSTONE ARSENAL, Ala. (Feb. 2, 2017) -- Soldiers are touring multiple U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Research, Development, and Engineering Center facilities as part of a three week training course to provide relevance to the acquisition process. Functional Area 51 Acquisition Intermediate Qualification Course provides advanced acquisition-related education to military serving in various acquisition roles.

FA51 IQC is intended for U.S. Army Acquisition officers. The 17 Soldiers attending are a mix of Active Duty, Army National Guard and Army Reserve. Most are senior captains or majors with 11-13 years of service and have completed previous acquisition assignments.

AMRDEC tour stops include the Prototype Integration Facility, Software Engineering Directorate, and Soldier Protection Lab. "We were careful to choose facilities that would include technologies the Soldiers would be more likely to come across," explained Dwayne Morton, FA51 Course Director. "These Soldiers have diverse backgrounds from Infantry to communications. We don't always necessarily need to see aviation or missile."

IQC prepares students for critical acquisition assignments. The program provides more advanced acquisition-related education to military who have previous acquisition assignments. The goal is to develop people into acquisition leaders capable of leading and managing any acquisition organization.

The class tours government and commercial acquisition activities. This agenda includes stops at Program Executive Office Missiles and Space, Army Contracting Command, U.S Army Acquisition Support Center, Defense Contract Management Agency, Arnold Air Force Base, and Anniston Army Depot and major corporate companies that support the government. During these stops Soldiers hear from senior leader guest speakers.

"We get direct access to senior leadership with extensive experience and knowledge," said Maj. Bart Brimhall, Assistant Product Manager, Program Management Office, Aircraft Survivability Equipment, Program Executive Office, Intelligence Electronic Warfare & Sensors. "It is important to motivate and mentor future leaders."

Lt. Col. Terry Phillips, Program Management, DCMA graduated from IQC in 2011. "Participating in the program put things in perspective. Technology moves so fast and during the training we got to see it hands on."

"AMRDEC has been such a strong partner of this program since 2011," said Morton. "We always want them to be part of the course because they are such a great representative sample of Research, Development and Engineering Command."

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The U.S. Army Aviation and Missile Research, Development, and Engineering Center leads the nation in advancement and sustainment of aviation systems, missile systems and related technologies.

AMRDEC's mission is to deliver technical capabilities for responsive and cost effective research, product development and life-cycle systems engineering solutions that equip the warfighter with the best technology today and tomorrow.