Fort Lee personnel share experiences at STEM event

Sgt. Luis Molina, representing the Army Logistics University, happily discusses his experiences in the Army with a pair of students who were participating in the Richmond Recruiting Battalion STEM Tour in March. Several CASCOM Soldiers and Army Civilians participated in the event that allowed young participants to explore potential career paths in the Army’s science, technology, engineering and math fields.

RICHMOND – Eleven Soldiers and Army Civilians were recognized May 30 for their work with students across eastern Virginia who were exploring potential career paths in the Army’s science, technology, engineering and math fields during a four-day tour that occurred in March.

The Richmond Recruiting Battalion partnered with the Combined Arms Support Command to educate and inspire visitors to pursue career paths that align with both a student’s aptitude for science and tech and a commitment to service and excellence.

To showcase the critical role STEM careers play in daily Army functions, a convoy of vehicles, robotics and interactive technology, and Soldiers trained in the various related fields were available to students and parents. The military participants and equipment traveled from Fort Lee’s Army Logistics University and Quartermaster, Ordnance and Transportation Schools to highlight the following:

  • VSAT Satellites, a communication system that provides worldwide data and voice communication connectivity to military forces.
  • Robotic systems adopted by the explosive ordnance disposal field to reduce the threat of improvised explosive devices, widely known as IEDs.
  • Enhanced Night Vision – a helmet-mounted or hand-held device that combines the light amplification of night vision devices with the heat-sensing capabilities of thermal imaging systems. This device allows for observation and target identification under adverse conditions.
  • 3D printing that allows Soldiers to fabricate mission-essential parts and training aids.
  • High-Mobile Multipurpose-Wheeled Vehicle, or Humvee, the light-weight tactical vehicle that can carry heavy military equipment.
  • ASIP Radio – used to transmit voice and data communications between military personnel.
  • Joint Capabilities Release, a system that leverages existing hardware to allow Soldiers inside the vehicle to track the locations of friendly forces, plot enemy locations, and exchange command and control messages.

The goal of the tour was to demonstrate the Army’s dedication to evolving technology and show students what a future in a STEM field could look like two years from graduation, said Aaron Hall, education and schools specialist, Richmond Recruiting Battalion.

“My hope is that students see the excitement these Soldiers share for their career, the technology they use, their opportunities for future promotion and how their career goals align with those of the students.”

According to the Army Recruiting Command’s current market analysis, more than 50 percent of young Americans say they are unfamiliar with the opportunities and benefits of military service. The Army offers more than 150 potential career paths. Dozens of them are in STEM fields.

From petroleum laboratory specialist to watercraft engineer, Army STEM careers put a Soldier’s passion for knowledge and creativity to the test with hands-on training and real-world experience. Relaying that message during these tours gives students an opportunity to envision what a career in the Army would look like.

“What I look forward to most is the individual interactions students will have with the Soldiers,” Hall said. “From talking about technology they’re currently using to discussing potential career paths ... it gets students really thinking about their future.”

The Soldiers and Army Civilians involved in the tour were recognized with a certificate of appreciation and a CASCOM commanding general coin. The Richmond Recruiting Battalion recipients are Jaclyn Pennoyer, Aaron Hall, Staff Sgts. Brian Pearce and Nolan Keen, and Sgt. Dung Danh. The CASCOM honorees that received accolades are Capts. Aishah Moore and Brian Hartley, 23rd Quartermaster Brigade; Staff Sgts. Marshall Meeks and Kimberly Morrelli, 59th Ordnance Brigade; and Sgts. Luis Molina and Taylor Talbot, Army Logistics University.

To learn more about Army careers and Richmond Recruiting Battalion’s upcoming events, visit www.goarmyvirginia.com or www.facebook.com/GoArmyVirginia.

(CASCOM Public Affairs contributed to this article).