B.O.S.S. Program: Preparing today's Soldiers to lead tomorrow's Army

By Roland SchedelMarch 15, 2024

BOSS Program: Preparing today's Soldiers to lead tomorrow's Army
For single Soldiers stationed within the U.S. Army Garrison Wiesbaden footprint, the Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers (BOSS) program offers weekly study halls sessions. The study halls’ primary goals are increasing Soldier confidence while simultaneously, instilling knowledge in Soldiers who are seeking advancement and success in the next higher grade. From right to left: 2nd Multi-Domain Task Force Staff Sgt. Ivy Roberson, 2nd MDTF Command Sgt. Maj. Michael Carlan and 2nd MDTF Sgt. Mitchell Factor conduct a mock board to prepare a junior Soldier.

(Photo by SSG Eclevia, 66th MI BDE MIB (T)) (Photo Credit: Roland Schedel)

WIESBADEN, Germany - Lifelong learning is key for any individual who seeks to have a direct or indirect impact on his or her career while improving their quality of life, personal growth, and professional development.

For Soldiers stationed within the U.S. Army Garrison Wiesbaden footprint, the Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers, or B.O.S.S., program offers weekly study sessions offering that type of practical assistance.

"The B.O.S.S. program is a Quality of Life multiplier for all our single Soldiers (…) what our Soldiers want to achieve truly defines our B.O.S.S. Program,” said USAG Wiesbaden Command Sgt. Maj. Yves Pamphil.

The study hall’s primary goals are increasing Soldier confidence, while simultaneously instilling knowledge in Soldiers who are seeking advancement and success in the next higher grade.

To reach that goal, 2nd Multi-Domain Task Force Staff Sgt. Ivy Roberson established and has been conducting weekly study halls for Soldiers who are preparing for competition, promotion or specialty boards.

Improving the NCO Corps as a Whole

"When I came to USAG Wiesbaden, I wanted to make sure that there was an environment here that allowed junior Soldiers to learn,” said Roberson.

Roberson wants Soldiers to understand duties, roles and added responsibilities that come with promotion to higher grades. Setting that foundation early sets the tone for the Soldier’s future advancement and success leading to a more knowledgeable and experienced Soldier who is better positioned to improve the future non-commissioned officer corps of tomorrow.

“The B.O.S.S. study hall is a great way for our young Soldiers, who are seeking advancement and promotion, to prepare for Soldier and NCO of the month, quarter, and year competitions, as well as promotion boards,” said USAG Wiesbaden Headquarters and Headquarters Company First Sgt. Delveto Johns.

Each week, the classes, which average up to 10 Soldiers, focus on U.S. Army regulations, publications or issues the Army faces today. Johns added that he could recall a time in his career, as a young Soldier striving to excel, when there were no study halls for Soldiers seeking to advance.

“These study halls are a great example of Soldiers taking care of Soldiers – today’s non-commissioned officers preparing Soldiers to be tomorrow’s leaders,” said Johns.

Customized lesson plans

Lesson plans are developed entirely by the team and the topics are tailored to ensure that a subject matter expert is present to go over practical applications.

Participating Soldiers can request study hall topics they would like to see covered during subsequent weeks. The team of volunteer NCO instructors, from the 66th Military Intelligence Brigade and the 2nd MDTF will prepare the specifically requested content with the help of senior leaders and subject matter experts.

For example, when it comes to first aid, the B.O.S.S. team will coordinate with the medical treatment facilities to have medical personal on hand as instructors. For other topics, handouts are provided for the Soldiers.

“[The study halls] not only provide them with questions and answers from doctrine, but I help them understand and apply it through open dialogue (…) my intent is to prepare them to not only know a regulation or policy, but also how to implement it when it comes time for them to lead in the moment," added Roberson.

For non-commissioned officers, the focus is on getting leaders to think ahead. In small exercises, NCOs learn how, when, and in what ways they should or could apply the topics covered. At the end of each month, policies and boardroom etiquette are covered.

From time to time, mock boards are organized with various leaders from the Garrison to make sure the Soldiers are ready and know how to conduct themselves properly using boardroom etiquette.

Study Hall is held every Tuesday at the Warrior Zone on Clay Kaserne, from 6 to 7:30 p.m. or until complete.

In addition to the study halls, the B.O.S.S. program has other programs aimed at helping Soldiers maintain a balanced life: leisure and recreation, community service and quality of life.

“The B.O.S.S. program represents the voice of the Army's single Soldier. B.O.S.S. members advocate for you by advancing quality of life issues to senior leaders across the installations on which they serve and throughout the Army,” said Johns.