FORT DETRICK, Md. -- U.S. Army Medical Materiel Agency leaders recognized the 103rd graduating class of the Medical Logistics Management Internship Program (MLMIP) during a ceremony June 24.
The class included 11 Soldiers and was the first group to complete the course’s revised 11-month program designed to develop strong medical logisticians through classroom training and on-the-job experience.
While always a demanding program, this year’s MLMIP class also experienced the unique challenges of supporting medical logistics during a global pandemic. Guest speaker Col. Michael Lalor, commander of Army Medical Logistics Command, spoke of how the class "rose to the occasion" to support missions worldwide.
"I cannot think that any class in the history of this program is more ready to head out on their utilization tours across the Army and the enterprise than this one," Lalor said. "You are grounded in skills that we need to generate materiel readiness and deliver life-saving medical products to the warfighter."
Started in 1967, MLMIP is designed to develop and strengthen the skills of mid-career medical logistics officers, warrant officers, noncommissioned officers and civilians.
Instructional focus areas include advanced technology; modern business practices and management techniques; Department of Defense systems and processes; DOD and civilian health care logistics; medical logistics support; and materiel acquisition.
Since its inception, MLMIP has graduated 500 Army officers, 154 noncommissioned officers, 13 warrant officers, four Navy officers and four civilians. The newest graduates include:
• Maj. Tolulope Adeyemi
• Maj. Aaron Shramek
• Maj. Jorge N. Osorio-Rodriguez
• Maj. Christopher A. Baisa
• Maj. Michael Baisa
• Capt. Tonya N. Johnson
• Capt. Andres Gil
• Sgt. 1st Class Brian J. Ockimey
• Staff Sgt. Shakina Lewis
• Staff Sgt. Jose F. Negron
• Staff Sgt. Cenisha Glass
"This is a feisty and eager group," MLMIP program manager LaTrish Jones said. "They have big hearts and it has been a great honor to work with them. They want to be better leaders and logisticians. It was a breath of fresh air to see an entire group with such a positive outlook and willingness to become better leaders."
Led by distinguished graduates Adeyemi, Osorio-Rodriguez, Gil and Glass, the class took part in not only educational programming in a classroom setting, but on-the-job training within both private and public sector medical logistics organizations.
"I recommend every future medical logistics leader take this program," said Adeyemi, who will be transitioning to the U.S. Army Medical Materiel Center-Europe in Germany for his next assignment.
"The overall experience contributes to creating well-rounded medical logisticians," said Osorio-Rodriguez, a medical operations officer and logistician with the Army Reserve.
Osorio-Rodriguez was selected to support USAMMA’s COVID-19 response, providing valuable experience in a real-world emergency situation. In that role, he interacted with customers about prepositioned medical stocks, processed requests for support and routed communication through the appropriate channels.
"Learning how responsive USAMMA is when needed and witnessing the deployment of medical assets at a moment’s notice was simply amazing," Osorio-Rodriguez said.
Adeyemi said it was the site visits to different industries, depots and distribution centers that he found most beneficial, providing a glimpse into how logistics works and similarities to the military enterprise.
"The program really solidified my confidence at directing medical logistics at the strategic and operational levels," he said.
For Glass, who plans to apply for warrant officer school in supply systems, the program provided education and experience that she can now share with her future logisticians and others within the military’s medical logistics community.
"The knowledge I have gained will provide me with the ability to influence others and give back to others who want to be well-rounded logisticians," she said. "Together, we will continue to improve our abilities to better serve the customer and our organization."
Gil, who is stationed at the Capabilities Development Integration Directorate in San Antonio, Texas, agreed that the program’s site visits helped him better understand supply chain management and "adopt demand-driven planning and business operating models based on real-time demand" that will benefit the Army enterprise.
"I have been exposed to seeing how the Army logistics operates and how we should operate in order to be efficient," he said. "This program has prepared us to one day run major logistics operations."
Lalor echoed that sentiment as he told the group they "will make lasting differences wherever" they serve.