Basic Camp (Cadet Initial Entry Training, CIET) Regiment 5, B Co., geared up in kevlars, eye and ear protection, rifles and were given blank grenades in preparation to take on the hand grenade assault course July 13.
The training is broken down into different sections for the Cadets to expand on their knowledge of how to identify different grenades, correct battle form, employing grenades, and individual movement techniques.
Cdt. Apoorva Parab, University of Texas Rio Grande Valley, is here as an MS2 trainer and has conquered the course before in prior training. She feels a lot more confident her second time around.
“I was here last year for CIET and I went through this course. I had a difficult time aiming and with some of the proper movements. But this year I feel more confident than I had before in my abilities, and I feel as if I’m doing much better,” Parab said.
Another element during the training is learning to communicate with your battle buddies in order to keep them safe when live ammunition is being used. Cdt. Michelie Mitchell, University of West Florida, expressed the value of working together.
“Knowing how to properly use your weapons is obviously important and knowing how to react in different situations, but knowing how to communicate with your battle buddy and protecting them is just as important,” Mitchell said.
At the end of the training, the Cadets implement all the exercises they’ve practiced throughout the day and take on the Hand Grenade Assault Course. Staff Sgt. Charlie Rubin, asst. NCO of Christensen Range, explained the importance of this final stage.
“The other exercises are like the homework before the big final exam. We don’t expect them to be experts at the end of the day, but want them to be able to recall everything they’ve learned and put it all together,” Rubin said. “We want them to have a general overview and leave with that warm fuzzy feeling on how it all works.”
After being in training for 16 days, dealing with a Heat Category of five, and given a lot of information at once, keeping Cadets engaged and motivated can be difficult. Sgt. 1st Class Jeremiah Hauprich, tactical trainer, said he uses his past experiences to help the Cadets keep the bigger picture in mind.
“I let them know of things I’ve gone through and experiences to keep them pushing. I remind them to train like the fight is true. That if you treat every time like it’s real then when the real thing does happen you’ll be more confident and you’ll know you have what it takes to stay in the fight,” Hauprich said.