Battalion Earns 99% Qualification Rate Using Postal Match, EIC

Battalion Earns 99% Qualification Rate Using Postal Match, EIC

McCrady Training Center
Eastover, S.C.

Integrating new Army small arms doctrine with the Postal Match and Excellence In Competition Programs led to a large increase in Battalion-level qualification rates.

The 345th Military Intelligence Battalion (MIRC) enlisted members of the Army Reserve Marksmanship Program to help conduct their small arms training, leading to a better than 99% qualification rate. Conducted at the McCrady Training Center in Eastover, South Carolina near Fort Jackson, the 345th MI held an extended Battle Assembly focused on getting their Soldiers up to speed on the Army’s new small arms training doctrine.

“Our goal was to break the negative effects of Army institutional inertia,” said Lt. Col. Luis Garcia, the 345th MI BN Commander. “We can’t make an improvement by doing things the same as before.”

During qualification held the previous year, the 345th MI BN qualified less than 35 of its Battalion’s Soldiers. This year, those numbers increased to a 99.2% qualification rate, the best the Battalion has done in a number of training cycles. Part of the improvement was due to instruction led by Army Reserve Marksmanship Program to counteract common issues. “I learned my drill sergeants at Initial Entry Training were wrong about a number of things, including how the sights work, how to use them, or correct zero procedures. I didn’t know any of this until I received this instruction from the Shooting Team,” said Spc. Paula Delgado, HHD 345th MI BN. “I also learned that I’m cross-eye dominant, which was a concept my drill sergeants never discussed or identified.”

The 345th MI BN also made full use of the Army’s new small arms training doctrine, starting with the current zero targets. Despite now being official for three years, the 345th had to go outside of the Fort Jackson area to locate these targets. “We called range operations at different locations throughout South Carolina and Georgia with no initial luck, but eventually found that Fort Benning Range Operations had some for our use,” said Sgt. Jenny Lewis, Supply Sergeant for A Co., 345th MI. “It took a 3.5-hour drive to pick them up so our Battalion would have them but I got it done. Mr. Outlaw (yes, that is his name) at Fort Benning was extremely helpful.”

Despite issues with local active duty support at Fort Jackson, the 345th MI found the South Carolina National Guard at McCrady to be knowledgeable and supportive. “We’re already tracking on the new standards and equipment on our end, including having barricades for the drills and qualification courses. We’re ready to support Soldiers on this in FY2020.” said First Sgt. Andrew Goza, South Carolina National Guard. In addition to supporting Soldier training at McCrady, First Sgt. Goza, a winner of the Governor’s Twenty marksmanship award through the National Guard, also works with the South Carolina National Guard competitive marksmanship program.

On top of the 345th learning about the Army’s new small arms standards, the Battalion implemented a Postal Match and Excellence In Competition events into their training as an additional gated and progressive approach. Both events feature shooting at a faster and more stringent pace than normal qualification. These events are available to all Soldiers and units in the Army Reserve.

Maj. Jason Konefal, Executive Officer of the 345th MI BN, led the way by winning the 345th MI BN EIC Pistol event with a score of 162 -3X (162 points with three tie-breaking X-ring hits.) The 345th had 87 Soldiers eligible to complete the EIC and the top ten percent of the finishers will receive formal Department of Army Orders in their permanent record awarding “Leg” points and authorizing wear of the bronze Excellence In Competition badge on their Army Service Uniform.

https://www.usar.army.mil/News/News-Display/Article/1931211/battalion-earns-99-qualification-rate-using-postal-match-eic/

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301st Military Police Postal Match

#RoadtoAwesome #KeepPounding #AmericasArmyReserve #USArmyReserve #WeaponsMastery
Salinas, Puerto Rico

The 1st Mission Support Geographical Command, 301st Military Police Company conducted an Army Reserve Postal Match at the Camp Santiago Joint Maneuver Training Site on April 11, 2019.

Motivated by the training guidance of Chief, Army Reserve Lt. Gen. Charles Luckey to create the most lethal, combat-ready Reserve Force in United States history, Sgt. Luis D. Torres took the initiative with the support of his training NCO, Staff Sgt. Mendez, and used their combined 30+ year experience as local State Police S.W.A.T. law enforcement officers to conduct the advanced training.

“We had the opportunity to run a Postal Match during our unit’s weapons qualification battle assembly,” said Sgt. Torres. “Instead of just ‘burning’ the leftover ammunition, we took advantage of the situation and implemented improved training. I had brought a supply of already-printed EIC targets and instructed Soldiers in the unit that volunteered for the opportunity to shoot the match.”

The World-wide Chief, Army Reserve Postal Matches are designed to be conducted as a part of unit qualification to provide the means of conducting small arms training beyond routine qualification. Excellence In Competition is a program dating back to 1884 to recognized skilled military and civilian shooters that accrue 30 EIC “Leg” points as Distinguished Riflemen. The EIC Postal Match is a reduced distance course using scaled targets at 25 meters to simulate most of the shooting done on Match 321, the EIC course recognized by the Army Marksmanship Unit and used throughout the Department of Army.

“I went over the course of fire and gave my Soldiers some dry run practice so they could get used to reloading from their gear while assuming the different positions under time constraints. I brought my Pocket Pro Timer II to accurately time our training and when shooting the course for record,” said Sgt. Torres. “What a great experience! I know my Soldiers felt humbled and acknowledge that we need more training. This was a great way to get there. There’s no time nor resources to spare as an Army Reserve Soldier!”

All Army Reserve are eligible to participate in these events and units are encouraged to host them. The U.S. Army Reserve Marksmanship program can help units provide this training opportunity for their Soldiers.

All Soldiers in the Army Reserve are eligible and encouraged to host and participate in these Postal Match events.
https://armyreservemarksman.info/postal-match/

New Small Arms Qualifications

#RoadtoAwesome #KeepPounding #AmericasArmyReserve #USArmyReserve

Change is coming. The U.S. Army Reserve needs to prepare now.

https://www.army.mil/article/218407/new_marksmanship_test_aims_to_create_more_realistic_environment

While it hasn’t received as much attention as the new Army physical fitness evaluation, the 40 targets on the rifle marksmanship range are also about to be engaged in a more combat-focused manner.

The U.S. Army released a set of Training Circulars that redacted the previous doctrine and established a new way to teach small arms skills. That was back in FY2016. If you or other Army personnel are still discussing “four fundamentals”, using silhouette targets for zeroing, and not implementing a Shot Process with a Peer and/or Experienced Coach, you’re three years behind the power curve.

This new doctrine is also redacting old qualifications with a more difficult and realistic course. TC 3-20.40 is pending publication and it revamps all individual weapon qualifications. Another Training Circular soon to follow will do the same with crew-served weapons.

The Army Reserve Marksmanship Program has already created material to help. The Army Reserve Marksman newsletter has article discussing this new doctrine. The World-wide Chief, Army Reserve Postal Matches has courses that can be conducted during routine group/zero and qualification without additional resources, making it an easy, fast, inexpensive, and effective way to practice the new doctrine and prepare for the new qualification.

Download the current Training Circulars and prepare today.