Melissa enters command training at Ft. Leavenworth

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News 12 First at Five, July 19, 2007

FORT LEAVENWORTH, KS---News 12's Melissa Tune has been transferred to Fort Leavenworth, Kansas for military training.

Fort Leavenworth, founded in 1827, is the oldest Army active duty post west of the Mississippi River. It is the home of the US Army Combined Arms Center, which involves advanced leadership development and various types of elite battle training. It is an essential school for our nation's military officers, and that’s why I'm here...but to better understand the training I'll get here at CGSC, or Command and General Staff College, one of the experts, Lt. Col. Kevin Stroder, explained the course.

"We're preparing them for the next ten years of military service, to become senior staff officers in the grades of major, lieutenant colonel, colonel, and commanders. So they'll be able to take the experiences that they have learned here, the shared experiences that they've learned here from the fellow students and instructors, and be able to go back out to an operational environment and be able to apply those skills, put those skills to use," Lt. Col. Stroder said.

Military skills that have been applied by some of the greatest military commanders of all time. Generals Eisenhower, Bradley, Patton and Grant to name a few all either helped to build this installation or significantly contributed to it. Their impact is evident all over post. A young Lt. Douglas MacArthur even lived in a building on post called the "rookery", the oldest building in all of Kansas.

Fort Leavenworth is one of the most historic installations in the country, but today it is known for its intense, advanced military training. That’s why the selection process for CGCS is quite competitive:

"This facility is a mix of all services that have the opportunity to come and expand their education."

That education will carry today’s military officers throughout the duration of their careers. I will leave Fort Leavenworth an officer with much greater skills, but I'm told it won't be easy...the course is pretty tough.

"Students at ILE are pretty busy," Lt. Col. Stroder said. "This is a graduate level course. However, it's very important to understand that during this course you'll be involved in a lot of reading and a lot of daily discussion in the classroom environment, and a series of practical exercises to reinforce what you've learned. But what's most important is we found family time with what you do and what you learn in an academic environment."

I am doing well here in Fort Leavenworth. Missing Augusta, but the weather here is balmy and hot and kind of reminds me of home. It's an honor to be here. I'm going in as a major, so once I've completed the course, I will have earned the right to be promoted to lieutenant colonel.

I'm looking forward to that, and to getting back home to Augusta.

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