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Inaugural Army Profession Symposium

Inaugural Army Profession Symposium

The Chief of Staff of the Army (CSA) hosted the inaugural Army Profession Symposium at West Point, New York, July 30-31, 2014. The symposium's purpose was to develop a shared vision, reinforce guidance, and generate dialogue on "Living the Army Ethic." Attendees reviewed the Army Ethic White Paper; explored future ethical challenges to the Army Profession; and discussed the concept and strategy for Character Development.

The event was sponsored by the Commanding General (CG), U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC). Invitees included senior Army leaders from all components.

The CSA's intent in establishing this symposium was to generate shared understanding of the central role of the Army Ethic in explaining, inspiring, and motivating why and how we serve. As the Army moves further into the 21st century, the Army is in a period of strategic transition which presents tremendous opportunities for the profession. The Army should be the nation's leading institution for human capital and ethical development. To be that leader, the Army must intensify its understanding of what it means for the Army to be a Profession.

View all the news and materials related to the Inaugural Army Profession Symposium

A Trusted Professional

Over a hundred captains from across the Army met 9 - 11 July to take part in Solarium 2014. Seven teams each with about 15 members each discussed Army issues. Topics the groups focused on were talent management, vision and branding, culture, mission command and education and training.

The branding and vision team took the floor and discussed their approach. The group wanted to find a short, simple, and unifying slogan. "Consistency and simplicity are key to creating an effective message that will resonate," said Capt. Douglas Morton. "We came up with 'A Trusted Professional' or 'Trusted Professionals," he continued.

Meanwhile the Culture team was also discussing identity issues the Army is having. CPT Victoria Wynn took the floor with her team stating, "There's an absence of a strong, unifying Army identity, resulting in Army traditions losing significance and a decrease in esprit de corps." "We love our Army traditions and our proud history, but we see from our level that our Army identity is not as strong as it could be," she continued. CPT Wynn went on to discuss how there is often more pride at the unit level and that if that success could be transferred to the Army level the how service would benefit.

Read about more suggestions made at the Solarium: Texting no substitute for face-time, captains tell CSA

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Do the Tough Right, and Not the Easy Wrong

Chief of Staff of the Army General Ray Odierno visited the ROTC Cadets at summer training and spoke for more than an hour to Leadership Development Assessment Course (LDAC) Cadets last week. General Odierno stressed the importance of learning from your mistakes as a leader and doing what is right for your Soldiers in the long term.

"[General] Odierno said Cadets should not underestimate the importance of their training at LDAC, and he stressed competence, commitment and character as key components of officership."

Read the full article by Alex Mclaughlin: Army Chief of Staff visits ROTC Cadets at summer training

Seek Out Good Mentors

In June 2014, Vice Chief of Staff of the Army General John F. Campbell was asked to address members of the Asian American Government Executives Network. In his remarks GEN Campbell focused on the importance of mentorship and how his mentors influenced his direction in life.

Thirty five years ago, as a newly commissioned 2LT, his original intent was to serve his five-year obligation in the Army and then embark on another career. However, he related that the counsel and example of senior NCO's and officers, whose character, competence, and commitment he greatly admired, inspired him to continue serve as an Army Professional. His mentors, mostly Vietnam Veterans, were dedicated to strengthening the Army after protracted years of war. Their example encouraged him to become a Soldier for Life. He concluded by reminding his audience - and all of us: "Soldiers don't care how much you know until they know how much you care."

Read the article at: Vice chief on leadership: Latch on to mentors

The Importance of the three C's

SMA Chandler speaks to Soldiers

Last week SMA Raymond Chandler met with Soldiers, families, and senior leaders to discuss the Army Profession, Army values, and other Soldier issues.

During a town hall meeting with more than 600 Soldiers in attendance SMA Chandler reiterated the importance of all three 3 C's saying, "Being an Army Professional is more than just doing your job well. You can't be a professional if you are not willing to also be a person of character and commitment. Competence is important, but it is only as important as character and commitment."

Read more about SMA Chandlers visit: SMA visits Germany, discusses Army profession, Soldier issues

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