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JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. – Sisters reconnect through Army Cadet Training Leadership Training program with 2d Stryker Brigade Combat Team.

Of all the army units Cadet Amelia Blackwell could have spent her Cadet Training Leadership Training (CTLT) attached to, it was her older sister’s unit, 2nd Battalion, 17th Field Artillery Regiment, that provided her first snapshot into the U.S. Army.

Her older sister, 2nd Lt. Grace Andrews is a field artillery officer and proud sister.

“I was immediately excited,” said Blackwell, “I called my sister the second I saw it.”

While CTLT is designed to provide cadets exposure to active duty army units and a positive experience that shapes their future plans, neither Blackwell nor Andrews thought the training would be the experience it turned out to be.

“Already, I have interacted with soldiers a lot more than I expected and have been able to see the interactions between officers and enlisted,” explains Blackwell, “It’s really easy to be told what officers are expected to do, but it’s another thing to see it.”

CTLT provides opportunities for cadets to temporarily join the U.S. Army’s formations and learn on the job training from commissioned officers. Blackwell and Andrews have always had a special bond; sharing a bedroom, playing on the same soccer team and attending West Point together.

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Shadowing her older sister has brought them even closer. While generally cadets learn from lieutenants, Andrews has found herself learning from her little sister as well.

“I learn a lot from Amelia. We have very different personalities. Amelia is an incredibly empathetic leader and is probably one of the most trusted people, someone who people turn to in times of need,” explains Andrews. “That personality trait is invaluable and something very helpful for me to see.”

When Amelia was asked what she had learned from her older sister during her time in CTLT, Blackwell looked at her sister and said, “I have learned everything from you.”

Lancer Brigade will host roughly 100 cadets during the 2021 summer cycle as part of the CTLT program.  Each cadet will leave the program with a better understanding of the Army and their future role as an Army Officer.

Learn more about CTLT at: