College of the American Soldier

Wednesday March 27, 2013

What is it?

The College of the American Soldier is a partnership between the Army and participating colleges and universities to improve Soldier professional development by providing an optimum balance of training and education.

What has the Army done?

U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command has implemented three educational programs to enhance leader development: the Career Noncommissioned Officer Degree Program, the Enlisted Education Program and the Advanced Degree Program.

The Career NCO Degree Program provides NCOs, at any point in their career, maximum credit for Army leadership schools completed in the Noncommissioned Officer Education System up to the Sergeants Major Course. The program offers business and management-related degrees and certification for credit toward a degree, Soldiers are also able to claim up to 62 percent of the American Council on Education recommended credit for an associate degree and 95 percent of the ACE recommended credit for a bachelor’s degree for completing Initial Entry Training through the resident SMC.

The Enlisted Education Program provides first-term Soldiers an opportunity to achieve an associate degree during their first term of enlistment with maximum credits for Basic Combat Training, Advanced Individual Training, One-Unit Station Training, Structured Self-Development 1 and the Warrior Leader Course.

The Advanced Degree Program provides candidates and graduates of the Sergeants Major Course an opportunity to obtain a master’s degree during their tenure at the United States Army Sergeants Major Academy.

What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?

The Army will continue to expand civilian higher education opportunities for Soldiers as follows:

(1) Provide a college orientation course to help Soldiers understand the correlation between Army training and continuing education systems and how they relate to a college education.

(2) Establish the Foreign Area NCO Program to provide NCOs with skills in language, regional experience and culture.

(3) Analyze opportunities to gain formal recognition, or credentials, for skills. Soldiers will increase their ability to find rewarding jobs when they leave active duty.

(4) Enhance leader development and promotion potential by adding directly related credentials to career maps on the professional development model.

Why is this important to the Army?

Encouraging the pursuit of higher education contributes to the development of adaptive and innovative Soldiers while providing recruitment and retention incentives.


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