By Alun Thomas | U.S. Army Recruiting Battalion – Phoenix
FORT CARSON, Colo. — A group of 30 educators and community partners from Arizona and Arkansas joined leadership from the Phoenix Recruiting Battalion for an educators tour April 27-28, 2022.
The purpose of the tour was to provide a comprehensive orientation and overview of Fort Carson for the attendees, who included teachers and counselors.
The tour highlighted the capabilities and activities offered at Fort Carson, including a visit to the 10th Special-Forces Group, a guided tour of the Army World Class Athlete program, briefs from combat medics and educational staff, a performance from the 4th Infantry Division Band and an opportunity to participate in a Humvee simulator.
The tour also showcased Army facilities, housing, as well as the everyday activities undertaken by service members on Fort Carson.
The tour is traditionally one of the most important events of the year for the battalion, as it allows them to showcase elements of the Army the attendees might not be familiar with.
The tour also helped improve communication and recruiting efforts between the education establishment and community partners, including encouragement of individual relationships with education administrators, counselors and teachers in the battalion area of operations.
Attending was Danielle Wilson, counselor, Baboquivari Unified School, Tucson, Arizona, who said the tour changed her previous misconceptions about Army service despite growing up in a military Family.
“I was a military brat … my father was in the Navy, but I didn’t know too much about the Army, which is why I attended,” Wilson said. “I think it’s a fabulous military branch, and now I understand the dynamics of the Army and what it takes to be a part of it.”
Wilson said she is excited to return and tell her students about the educational benefits offered by the Army and relay the positive aspects of serving.
“Finding out about the different career paths you can take was an eye opener, especially being part of a band,” she said. “Whether being a singer, guitarist or drummer, this is something my students love to do. If this is something they can make a career, I’d love to promote it to them.”
Also on the tour was Ellen Hefner, counselor, Russellville High School, Arkansas, who said she enjoyed learning about the different opportunities the Army has to offer.
“A career in the Army gives young people purpose and direction they may not get elsewhere; it’s a source of security that other jobs can’t provide — guaranteed housing, paycheck, health care,” Hefner said.”
Hefner said they are parents who are reluctant to let their children join haven’t seen the Army up close and are swayed by what they see in the media, which isn’t the case.
“Lots of parents think they’re automatically sending their kids into battle and they’re going to war – clearly this isn’t the case for everyone,” Hefner said. “They need to understand the number of opportunities the Army offers and how their children can grow from them. They can get stability from the Army and out of it when they become a civilian.”