Center for the Army Profession and Ethic

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NCOs at USMA discuss the Army Profession, the Army Ethic, and Character Development

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Sgt. Maj. Boris Bolaños, senior enlisted advisor to the Center for the Army Profession and Ethic (CAPE), spoke to noncommissioned officers (NCOs) from the United States Military Academy (USMA) at West Point, NY, on July 13 as part of a NCO Forum. Bolaños and USMA Command Sergeant Major Timothy Guden discussed topics important to the NCOs, including the Army Profession, the Army Ethic, Character Development and trust.

Read the full article by PointerView: NCO Forum focuses on character, ethics in Profession of Arms

CAPE Shares Army Story with General Society of Mechanics and Tradesman

Members of the Center for the Army Profession and Ethic leadership team participated in the General Society of Mechanics and Tradesmen of New York City annual Independence Day Celebration and Dinner held June 28. CAPE Director Col. John Vermeesch, the keynote speaker, used this unique opportunity for CAPE to share the Army's story with the amazing and patriotic members of the General Society, one of New York City's oldest professional organizations.

Founded in 1785, the General Society continues to serve and improve the quality of life of the people of the City of New York.

General Society of Tradesman and Mechanics Website

Not in My Squad Celebrates Army Birthday at Fort Hood

NIMS Cake < PreviousNext >

The Center for the Army Profession and Ethic's Sgt. Maj. Boris Bolaños and Joe Livingston presented a Not in My Squad workshop hosted by Command Sgt. Maj. Edward Kelsey of the 1st MED BDE Fort Hood, Texas. Workshop participants, including squad leaders from Fort Bliss, Fort Polk, and other squads from the 1st Armored Division, took the opportunity to celebrate the Army's 242nd birthday while they were there. The workshop concluded with Kelsey challenging the squad leaders to help him make a difference in the Noncommissioned Officer (NCO) Corps.

Learn more about Not in My Squad workshops.

Lying to Ourselves YouTube Lecture

Perspectives in Military History Series at the US Army Heritage and Education Center

Lying to Ourselves: Dishonesty in the Army Profession

Every day, no matter the environment or specific duties, U.S. Army officers are bombarded with overwhelming demands for their units to accomplish tasks, and sometimes tasks are far beyond their capacity. According to a study from the U.S. Army War College's (USAWC) Strategic Studies Institute (SSI), many Army officers allow their own honor and integrity to slip in the face of long-term exposure to overwhelming demands. The authors of the study, Dr. Leonard Wong and Dr. Stephen Gerras, make the case that a U.S. Army Officer's signature and word have, in many cases, lost the luster of true honor and integrity. Their lecture outlines the issue of untruthfulness among officers, and discuss the steps the Army should take to affect the culture.

In February 2015, Drs. Wong and Gerras published an extensive study outlining the deception occurring at all levels of the Army's leadership in response to the pressure officers are placed under to report success in their unit, even when success does not necessarily exist. In response to their study, the authors offer solutions to change the culture in the Army and the military as a whole. In this lecture, the authors outline the issue, offer solutions, and review the impact their 2015 study had on the U.S. Army in the two years since publication.

Lecture Date: April 19, 2017

Key Time Marks

  • 2:30 - Background on the Study
  • 9:56 - Do you lie?
  • 10:28 - Checking the box
  • 11:30 - Example: Mandatory Training
  • 13:05 - Example: Storyboards Downrange
  • 14:40 - Example: Going on leave
  • 16:50 - Intent: Well-meaning requirements or CYA
  • 20:00 - Example: Officer Evaluation Report Support Form
  • 22:30 - Ethical Fading
  • 30:20 - Technology gives some distance to the lie
  • 33:20 - Rationalizing/Dumb Requirements
  • 34:25 - Rationalizing/Mission and Troops
  • 36:00 - So What? Individuals Get to Define Right and Wrong
  • 38:00 - So What? All Things Become Suspect
  • 38:40 - So What? It Hides Careerism
  • 39:35 - So What? It Teaches Hypocrisy
  • 41:42 - So What? If the Profession Doesn't Fix It, Someone Else Will
  • 43:30 - Three Recommendations
  • 49:48 - What was the reaction to the study?
  • 58:30 - Why have we created this environment?
  • 60:00 - Q & A

2017 Mission Command Conference at West Point

West Point's Simon Center for the Professional Military Ethic sponsored the 2017 Mission Command Conference (MCC) at the United States Military Academy April 19-20. The theme of this year's conference was "Black Hearts," a book written by Jim Frederick. Michelle Eberhart wrote an article for West Point's "Pointer View" entitled, "MCC―Leaders advise cadets in the stretch run to graduation," in which she says the conference is "[West Point] Superintendent Lt. Gen. Robert L. Caslen Jr.'s Capstone Course of Officership and is intended to help inspire current and future members of the military profession for a lifetime of service to the nation."

Eberhart quoted U.S. Army Director of the Mission Command Center of Excellence, Brig. Gen. James J. Mingus, who noted that you cannot fight wars unless you are the master of Mission Command philosophy. He said, "It's really about the profession, it's really about the ethics and values associated with it to drive that profession; it's the leadership around that that makes it happen."

Read the full article on Pointer View: MCC―Leaders advise cadets in the stretch run to graduation

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