Military Science level III cadets from the Royal Warrior Battalion traveled to Fort Indiantown Gap this weekend for a joint field training exercise event along with their peers from Bucknell University, Lehigh University, Dickinson College and Widener University. More than 120 cadets and cadre took part in the four-day training event that ran from April 11 through April 14. The joint field training exercise serves as the capstone training event for those Army ROTC cadets who will attend the 29-day Leaders Development and Assessment Course (LDAC) this summer at Joint Base Lewis-McChord located near Tacoma, Wash.
Upon arriving at Fort Indiantown Gap, the cadets of the Royal Warrior Battalion went through inprocessing and were quickly assigned to the cadet company with which they would train throughout the weekend. Once inprocessing was complete, cadet were administered the Army physical fitness test, which consists of two minutes of push-ups, two minutes of sit-ups and a two-mile run. Among the Royal Warriors who achieved a perfect score of 300 on the fitness test were Cadets Christian Burne, Nicholas Constantino, Morganne Hedden, Shane Stark, Michael Shannon and Nicolette Pizzo.
On Friday and Saturday the cadets participated in either the land navigation committee or the tactics committee, where cadets engaged in training from sunrise until well past dark. At the land navigation training site cadets participated in two iterations of day land navigation where they were required to find five of eight points utilizing a map, protractor and compass. This event served to test the map reading skills the cadets have developed over the past two or three years. The culminating event at the land navigation committee was night land navigation where cadets were required to find three of five points.
While with the tactics committee, cadets were tested on their knowledge of squad and platoon level tactics, as well as their ability to plan and execute an operations order. Cadets executed a variety of missions ranging from the conduct of an ambush to performing a reconnaissance. Additionally, several scenarios forced cadets to interact with civilians on the battlefield, challenging their ability to communicate and make quick yet informed decisions.
“This weekend was a great experience,” said Cadet Hope Oliver. “JFTX really allowed cadets a chance to do everything they have practiced over the last three years, as well as allowed us to work with cadets from other schools. It was a great weekend that prepared us for our upcoming training this summer, LDAC.”
Cadet Maureen Bullis added, “I would say that despite the rain, I had a really good time getting to know my squad. Through the STX lanes we worked really well together and were able to bond through it all. They really made the whole experience a lot more enjoyable.”
In addition to the leadership positions cadets held while executing tactical training, many found themselves in garrison leadership billets once the training for the day had concluded. Those in garrison leadership were responsible for ensuring barracks were cleaned, as well as making sure cadets were briefed on the conduct of training the next day and that their equipment were ready for the next day.
"Gaining the experience of a 'mini-LDAC' at JFTX by having us conduct several of its core components – physical fitness test, land navigation, squad and platoon tactics, and garrison operations – served as both a confidence boost and means of improvement," said Cadet Burne. "We gained the confidence to know that we can handle what is coming up this summer, while also getting the opportunity to fine-tune those areas where we all still need a little work."
This summer 30 cadets from the Royal Warrior Battalion will take part in the LDAC at Joint Base Lewis-McChord. Following LDAC several cadets will take part in advance leader development programs such as the cadet troop leader training program and the nurse summer training program.
Cadets and cadre of the Royal Warrior Battalion traveled to Fort Indiantown Gap for a joint field training exercise event this past weekend.