Since being established a year ago Desert University or “Desert-U” has an average enrollment of 113 Soldiers and Leaders. While pursuing education goals while simultaneously balancing mission requirements is always challenging, it’s a critical part of our professional ethic. In order to become a better Soldier or Leader, education is one of the key components. Training will always be a critical part of the journey towards excellence, but Soldiers and Leaders who possess a broad foundation of life-long learning are more important than ever.
As the Armed forces become leaner and more agile, education becomes a key discriminator between those that strive for excellence, and those who are satisfied with the status-quo. With the varied missions and the spectrum of operational challenges we face currently and those we may face in the future- a solid learning base fosters the ability to be mentally agile.
One of the Army’s three critical Leader attributes, mental agility is fostered by continuing education. Being mentally agile helps leaders address changes and adapt to the situation and the dynamics of operations. Critical and innovative thinking are abilities that enable our Leaders and Soldiers to be adaptive.
“Desert-U,” is not a school but an initiative that supports Soldiers in achieving their educational goals. “Desert-U,” allows a Soldier two days a week, between Monday and Thursday, during the hours of 1500-1800, to either take an on-post in-person class through Barstow Community College or Park University, or take an online course at an approved location. Approved locations include the library, a unit day room, or the Education Center. Approved locations may not include a Soldier’s room or home.
The full policy letter can be found on line, in your unit orderly room, or at the Education Center, where you can also find all of the course offerings for the fall term. Terms begin on 13 AUG for Barstow Community College and 20 AUG for Park University.
I applaud all who have taken advantage “Desert-U,” as well as unit Leaders who have supported this program. I want this program to flourish, as we owe it to our Soldiers and Leaders.
See you on the high ground!
LEAD TRAIN WIN!