Eastman Chemical Company Provides Employment to Their Second PaYS Veteran
Photo right - Army veteran, Eastman employee and PaYS Soldier, Josh Roberts
Growing up in Kingsport, Tennessee you can't miss the skyline created by miles of Eastman Chemical Company's twisting pipelines. As a graduate of Kingsport's Sullivan North High School in 2003, Josh Roberts was more than familiar with Eastman's presence. Eastman operates more than 40 manufacturing sites in 16 countries but is headquartered in Kingsport. Josh was recently hired by Eastman Chemical Company as an Operations Helper. A position he probably wouldn't have been offered if it wasn't for PaYS Partner point of contact Jerry Bush's commitment to the program and its veterans. "Once Josh was identified as a PaYS Soldier I pulled his resume" explained Jerry Bush, Eastman's Principal Staffing Recruiter. PaYS got Josh the interview, but it was up to Josh to get the job.
Josh joined the Army after graduating from high school and working odd jobs. He joined as a Cargo Specialist receiving a cash bonus and the PaYS Program option. "I learned about PaYS while enlisting into the U.S. Army. The Army Guidance Counselor gave me a selection of employers to choose for my post-Army interview. I selected Eastman Chemical Company because growing up I had heard it was a great company to work for and about its many benefits. There are not many employers that can offer job security in my home town, but Eastman Chemical is definitely one of them. They have a great reputation" Josh said.
Before Josh received his Honorable Discharge, he attended and completed the Army's Transition Counseling program where he perfected his resume. Josh explained "During the class I did several mock interviews which better prepared me for the hiring civilian hiring process." A graduate of Strayer University with a Bachelor of Science in Information Systems, as well as his military training and experience Josh stood out during his interview with Eastman.
Having interviewed and hired veterans previously from the PaYS program Jerry wasn't surprised that Josh was "poised and well prepared" for his interview. "He was an above average-strong applicant" Jerry commented. "Once Josh made contact with me, I expedited him through the system... Moved him to the front of the line for his initial interview and then immediately scheduled him for his final interview. After his successful final interview, I moved him to the front of my "hire hold list" (those already completed the final interview and waiting on a hire date to be assigned) and immediately hired him (the application/hiring process at Eastman for the operations positions normally takes 12-18 months -- Josh as a PaYS soldier went to the front of the line" according to Jerry Bush. "Josh provided very solid answers to all the interview questions, exhibited maturity, positive attitude and great communication skills."
Josh likes his job as an operation helper and plans to stay with Eastman for the long haul. "I like my current position because I pretty much stay busy the entire 12 hour shift walking back and forth throughout the building" he explained "It's a great way to stay in shape". With a long career ahead of him and plans to expand his family with wife Ellie, Josh has his sights on moving up with Eastman. "I see myself continuing my career here and my long term professional goal is to pursue my Master's in Information Security and apply for a position in Eastman's Technology Division".
Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) Joins Army Program Connecting Vets with Jobs
By Andrew Knochel, Cronkite News Service
Photo left - Future Soldier Anthony Nitz
Photo right - Cronkite News Service interviews Future Soldier Andrew Nitz
PHOENIX — When Anthony Nitz ends his stint as a military police officer, he'll have a better shot at fulfilling his dream of working in civilian law enforcement thanks to a partnership between the Army and employers.
"To know that I'll have an interview with a reputable place that's not going anywhere any time soon, it just means a lot," said Nitz, a Phoenix resident set to begin his military service. "It means a lot to my family, too."
He attended a ceremony Thursday at which the Arizona Department of Transportation joined the Partnership for Youth Success, which helps match those entering the Army with job opportunities after their service.
Participating soldiers are connected with one of the more than 400 companies and government agencies in the program, and they are guaranteed a job interview after leaving the Army.
An employer steers participants toward the Army training and certification that will help soldiers achieve their career goals.
John Nichols, ADOT's deputy director for business operations, said the program will help connect his department with highly qualified employees to fill hundreds of positions in engineering, truck maintenance and other areas.
"Like any big organization, finding good employees, trained, experienced people, is very, very difficult," Nichols said.
"What this program means is we can get young people coming out of the military who already have the training needed to jump right into the job and start out," he added. "We don't have to invest a lot of time and energy into them. So it's a big win-win for the Department of Transportation."
ADOT joins 13 partner employers based in Arizona, including U-Haul International Inc. and the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office, and 50 other organizations that recruit in Arizona.
Lt. Col. Jennifer McAfee, who commands the Army's Phoenix recruiting battalion, said the program has 3.6 million job opportunities in a wide range of industries, offering soldiers confidence that they'll have jobs when they finish their service.
"It just fits," McAfee said. "It fits for the soldier to come back and have the same skills."
Nitz said he's glad to know he'll have a better shot at the career he wants when his military service ends. "It's a great opportunity for anyone who has it," he said.
Photo above - Lt. Col. Jennifer McAfee makes a presentation to John Nichols during the PaYS Partnership ceremony.
Mercury Marine Partners with U.S. Army
By Alex Ronallo, FOX 11
FOND DU LAC, WISCONSIN - Mercury Marine is joining area and Wisconsin companies in partnering with the Army to eventually give veteran soldiers a chance at a job when they finish their military duty.
Mercury Marine employee Marcea Weiss is an Army veteran. She knows first-hand how tough it can be for vets to find jobs when their service ends.
"When transitioning from the military into finding a role as a civilian it can be really difficult to figure out how to match that up, what's your skill set, what your strengths are," Weiss explained to FOX 11.
Now Mercury Marine has joined up with the Army's Partnership for Youth Success, or PaYS program. It works by pairing new recruits with companies they might like to work at in the future, like Mercury Marine.
"They can go into a field within the Army that's going to correspond to a job that would relate to something at Mercury Marine," explained Lieutenant Colonel Daryl Collins.
PaYS guarantees Army veterans interviews at their preferred companies. The job is not guaranteed, but Collins says it is a major leg up.
"They can now join the military, learn those skills, learn the Army skills that overlap those skills, come out as a stronger team member, get some real-world experience," said Collins.
Photo left - (Left to right) Major General (retired) Paul Lima, Civilian Aide to the Secretary of the Army for Wisconsin, Mercury President Mark Schwabero, Denise Devereaux, Mercury vice president of human resources, and Lieutenant Colonel Daryl Collins, Commander of the U.S. Army Recruiting Battalion Milwaukee, display the ceremonial memorandum of agreement.
Mercury Marine President Mark Schwabero told us PaYS is a good recruiting tool for the Army.
"You know, 'we've got programs and things in place with companies that are really looking forward to being able to hire you,'" said Schwabero.
But according to Schwabero his company will benefit too, having its pick of highly qualified applicants.
"In terms of accountability and working as teams, and holding themselves to higher standards, they'll be a great source of employees," explained Schwabero.
"To have a company like ours, Mercury Marine, reaching out to kind of make the first connection and first step is really powerful. It's really helpful for veterans," said Weiss.
480 companies are in the PaYS program nationwide. 17 of those are in Wisconsin. Schneider National based in Ashwaubenon was the first company in the state to join.
Video and article - http://www.fox11online.com/news/local/fox-cities/mercury-marine-partners-with-us-army#
Performance Contractors Handpicked to Partner by the Baton Rouge Army Recruiting Team
By Jennifer Villaume
Photo right - From Left to Right: Art Favre (President), Kevin Courville (Executive VP), David Theriot (Military Workforce Development) and Lt. Col. Douglas Reynolds, Baton Rouge Battalion Commander
During a LSU Football game last season, Lt. Col. Doug Reynolds, Baton Rouge Battalion Commander, met the President of Performance Contractors, Art Favre, and enlisted his help through the Partnership for Youth Success program.
About the same time, Capt. Steve Milauskas, Baton Rouge Company Commander, compiled a list of the top 10 largest companies in Baton Rouge. Performance Contractors was tops on that list.
Reynolds engaged those top 10 employers about opportunities within the PaYS program.
Chet Ferraci, the Director of Human Resources for Performance Contractors, answered quickly saying he was happy to be involved. Soon after, Milauskas presented the information to him at the corporate headquarters.
"Since starting the process of the PaYS program, a representative from their company has attended my Grassroots Advisory board meeting in March and also linked up with the local Army reserve units to present job openings they currently have for reservists and Veterans."
David Theriot, a veteran of the Army and a Project Services Coordinator with Performance Contractors, was tasked with seeking out and recruiting other Veterans and current National Guard and Reserve members.
"We are a rapidly expanding company who realizes the value of military service, and would like to add more service members to our team," said Theriot. "We found the Army PaYS program as a way to find and connect with current service members. We are just getting started with the PaYS program, but so far the representatives have been very eager and willing to help."
Ferraci has been in contact with a local Army Reserve Unit and has informed them of numerous job opportunities coming up in the short term; over 80 jobs as welders and pipefitters paying between $30-40 per hour.
"One of these units recently returned from a deployment and many of the Soldiers are in need of employment," said Milauskas. "The company, at the initial time of partnership, was looking to hire veterans with a starting salary of over $40,000 per year. They are willing to completely train them as well."
Photo above - (left to right) Capt. Steve Milauskas, Baton Rouge Company Commander, Chet Ferachi (Corp Business Development Manager), Kevin Courville (Executive VP), Art Favre (President), Lt. Col. Douglas Reynolds, Baton Rouge Battalion Commander, 1st Sgt. Deirdre Bell, Baton Rouge Company 1st. Sgt., Joel Thames (Workforce Development & Training), David Theriot (Military Workforce Development)
As far as the PaYS program, that satisfies Theriot's need for long range planning for new hires.
"I am excited about the possibilities for this program because most of the Soldiers that I am meeting are eager to learn our business, but are not immediately qualified to do the work," said Theriot. "The Soldiers that are coming out of the Army are motivated to work and highly trainable, but need to make money immediately."
"We are looking to hire mostly welders and pipefitters, which takes about four semesters of school to acquire the necessary skills. With the PaYS program, we should be able to counsel the Soldiers and get them in training while they are still active duty," said Theriot. "This will give us a candidate that is ready to be hired as soon as they ETS, and give the Soldier a career waiting for them after their service."
Soldier Lookup Application Developed to Assist Army Transition Counselors
Photo left - Steps in the "Soldier Lookup" application
The US Army Partnership for Youth Success (PaYS) program has developed and implemented a Soldier Lookup web application. The application was designed for H2H Program Support Managers (PSM), Transition Employment Liaisons (TEL), ACAP Transition Support Managers (TSM), and Contract Installation Managers (CIM) to use via the PaYS website, https://www.armypays.com. In keeping with the goals of the FY14 Army Transition Campaign Plan, to prepare and connect transitioning Soldiers, all Army transition counselors have the ability to access and query the PaYS database to determine if the exiting Soldier(s) they are assisting are aligned with a PaYS employer partner. The 'PaYS Soldier Lookup' application displays specific PaYS employer partner information which can be printed or emailed to the Soldier.
The database will maintain the most current PaYS partner contact information and point of contact. Putting this information in the hands of exiting Soldiers will facilitate a better interaction with their pre-selected employer partner. Partners who are contacted by their PaYS Soldiers will be able to verify eligibility by logging into the PaYS Information Exchange (PIX). Transition counselors will indicate if PaYS information is provided, allowing the PaYS helpdesk to follow-up and track interview/hire ROI.
Phillip Mucker, PaYS Marketing Analyst for the Northwest
Phillip is a Kentucky native born in Louisville and moved with his family to Oakland California when he was 10. After high school graduation, in 1984, Phillip joined the Army taking Basic Training at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri then going to Fort Gordon, Georgia for training as a Special Electronic Device Repairman. His first duty station was Fort Belvoir, Virginia where he worked at their Night Vision Lab maintaining the night vision equipment. During his assignment at Ft. Belvoir, Phillip was selected as the 1988 Soldier of the Year.
Phillip volunteered for Recruiting Duty as a field recruiter in Lafayette, Indiana then as Station Commander back in his hometown of Louisville. Phillip took over a larger station before working at the Louisville MEPS as a guidance counselor. He received the recognition of being top Senior Guidance Counselor twice and was selected as the 3rd Brigade Counselor of the year.
Phillip received his BS degree in organization management at Oakland City University while still in recruiting. He was stationed next in Clarksville, Tennessee as a Station Commander then on to the Tyler, Texas recruiting company as a First Sergeant. His last year before retiring in 2004 was spent as the Senior Guidance Counselor for the Houston, Texas MEPS.
After his retirement from the Army, Phillip worked as the security interviewer at the Louisville MEPS and earned his MBA at Webster College in 2008. He was hired directly after graduation as a PaYS Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) Marketing Analyst. When the team restructured the ROTC position was incorporated into the universal marketing position that serves all three components, Regular, Reserve and Cadet Soldiers in the Pacific Northwest.
#489 American Income Life Ins. dba ALTIG - Portland Bn - American
Income Life Insurance Company is the premier in-home life insurance sales company serving working families in 49 States, Canada, and New Zealand. They are also one of the nation's largest providers of supplemental life insurance to labor unions, credit unions, and associations. American Income Life is seeking veterans for agents, marketing, sales, management and customer service positions.
#490 Hays County Juvenile Center - San Antonio Bn - The Juvenile Center
hires over 50 employees a year and is a conduit to county jobs. Center staff direct the personal and social adjustment of young people referred by the Court or Intake Section of the Juvenile Department. The program is boot camp style so prior military do well. Positions include Detention Officers and the Food Service field.
#491 Progressive Casualty Ins. Co. - Cleveland Bn - Progressive
Casualty Insurance Company is one of the largest auto insurance groups in the United States. They began in 1937 by taking an innovative approach to auto insurance. The company can provide nationwide job opportunities to enlisted Soldiers and Cadets in accounting, customer service, human resources, IT, marketing, and insurance sales. The company is a Fortune 500 company.
#492 Fenner Dunlop Americas - Harrisburg Bn - Fenner Dunlop Americas
provides safe and complete conveyor systems and services to the mining and industrial sectors, including belt manufacturing and system engineering.
They require skilled mechanical fitters, installation, maintenance, and refurbishment personnel. Fenner Dunlop has degreed and non-degreed positions
for enlisted and ROTC Soldiers.
U.S. Army Focuses on Army Reserve Recruitment through Unique Sponsorship of Tough Mudder® Challenge
Alexandria, VA (September 3, 2013)
The U.S. Army – the strongest team in the Nation – will start sponsoring “Probably the Toughest Event on the Planet,” the Tough Mudder adventure challenge, September 7, in Oshkosh, Wisc.
The U.S. Army’s sponsorship of eight events is part of a new pilot program aimed at highlighting the unique service opportunities available in the Army Reserve to Tough Mudder participants seeking to test their mental, emotional, and physical strength.
“There is an obvious similarity between Tough Mudder participants and Army Strong Soldiers,” said Mr. Mark Davis, deputy assistant Secretary of the Army for Marketing and director of the Army Marketing and Research Group (AMRG). “Soldiers understand and Tough Mudder participants certainly experience the importance of perseverance – of overcoming physical and mental obstacles by not quitting.”
“Our involvement with the Tough Mudder organization enables the Army to engage a key audience about Army values and service; the ability to serve part time; and to showcase the opportunities that exist in the Army Reserve to help motivated men and women achieve their professional and personal goals.”
U.S. Army Soldiers will be on-site to engage participants and assist at Army obstacles at the first Army-sponsored challenge in Wisconsin as well as seven other events in the following areas: Tahoe, Calif. (September 28-29); Seattle, Wash. (October 5-6); Gerrardstown, W.Va. (October 19-20); Dallas, Texas (October 26-27); Charlotte, N.C. (November 2-3); San Diego, Calif. (November 9-10); and Englishtown, N.J. (November 16-17).
“Working with the U.S. Army was a natural synergy for us,” said Simon Massie-Taylor, Senior Vice President of Commercial at Tough Mudder. “Each event poses unique challenges, and participants – much like Soldiers – have to be mentally and physically tough in order to succeed.
--------------Tough Mudder® Course Sends Athletes on Ultimate Fitness Challenge in Oshkosh----------------
By Derek Paulus,
Gannett Wisconsin Media
OSHKOSH — The warm weather season in Wisconsin is prime time for the area's running events and races, but some athletes have held out for an event that offers an even bigger challenge.
The event is known as Tough Mudder, and it is often described as the toughest event on the planet. The ultimate fitness challenge, sponsored for the first time by the U.S. Army, brought willing participants to Oshkosh to push themselves on opening day Saturday.
With obstacles that drag participants through the mud, force them over vertical walls and even inflict electric shocks while they crawl through a pool of muddy water, it's no surprise that the U.S. Army has come to support an event that offers such a challenge.
Army recruiter Sgt. 1st Class Nate Haugan was an event participant who said that Army principles can also be found in the Tough Mudder event.
"The Army's leadership, the Army's dedication ... That's what we are, is the Army."
"Teamwork is another Army quality that is necessary for success at Tough Mudder...We're there to run it but we're also there to help everyone make it through the event," he said.
Both participants and staff gave a helping hand to individuals struggling through the course's obstacles along the way.
Among tents set up on the grounds for Advil, BIC and Degree deodorant, was an Army tent providing participants with recruiting information.
Major LeVar Armstrong, Public affairs officer for the Army Marketing and Research Group, said the event allows the Army to reach a specific group of people.
"It's an innovative way for the Army to reach out to target a recruiting audience," he said.
The Tough Mudder event also operated in support of veterans through the Wounded Warrior Project, which works to aid injured veterans. As part of the support for the Wounded Warrior Project, many participants lined up to have their head shaved, or cut into a mohawk or mullet hair style at the BIC 4 Good tent in hopes of reaching the goal of 10,000 heads shaved this year and a BIC donation of $100,000 to the Wounded Warrior Project.
Haugan said he and his team of four others were participating in support of the Wounded Warrior Project. Haugan, who has been on duty in both Afghanistan and Iraq, said he has friends in the project.
Though details have not been revealed, Tough Mudder is slated to return to Wisconsin in late 2014.
Cummins, Inc. and Rolls-Royce, Inc. Create Focus Group to Better Serve Veterans
Cummins, Inc. invited Rolls-Royce, Inc., LTC Bliss and MSG Martinez sponsors of the Soldier for Life Program, Danny Free from the Army PaYS Program and Rick Rife from the H2H Program to discuss ways to support veterans leaving the military. The group met at the Cummins, Inc. distribution center in Indianapolis, IN on 10 September.
The group discussed specific qualifications required for their positions and issues veterans face that need additional certification to qualify for employment at Cummins, Inc. During the presentation, Danny Free explained how partners load positions into the PaYS on line database by Job Title, Job Description, and Job Qualification. Along with the Army's Credentialing Opportunities On-Line, (COOL) web site the partner can tailor each position by certification in the Job Qualification section. The COOL site explains in detail the Military Occupational Specialties (MOSs) that can qualify for certification.
Photo above - Left to Right: Martin Wituszynski; Cummins, Inc., Rick Rife; H2H Program, Tiffany Overton; Rolls-Royce, MSG Adam Martinez; Soldier of Life Program, Danny Free; Army PaYS Program, Kenneth Hurst; Cummins, Inc., LTC Mike Bliss; Soldier of Life Program, Bill Kime; Cummins Crosspoint, LLC. ,Robert Spanogle; Indiana CASA
Rick Rife from Hero's 2 Hire (H2H) Program explained the process for registering in their H2H database. LTC Bliss and MSG Martinez, gave an overview of the many services provided to Soldiers and their families through the Soldier for Life Program. They explained how the program prepares Soldiers for future civilian careers and how participating companies can use the established network to find quality potential candidates. MSG Martinez shared how he provides training for employers about Soldiers as candidates, Army rank structure, military acronyms, and leadership schools.
After the briefings the group attended a luncheon followed by of the maintenance facility. Danny pointed out that a distributor of Cummins, Inc., (Cummins Southern Plains) is already a PaYS partner and successfully uses the program.
Senior Enlisted Advisor to Assistant Secretary of the Army Manpower and Reserve Affairs Retires
Photo left - Mr. Thomas R. Lamont, ASA M&RA and SGM Michael L. Byrd, Sr, Senior Enlisted Advisor to the ASA M&RA
In a ceremony held at the Pentagon on September 13, 2013, Sergeant Major Michael L. Byrd, Sr was honored as he retired from the U.S. Army after a career that spanned 31 years. Married to the PaYS Program Manager, Angela R. Byrd, he worked as the Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Honorable Thomas R. Lamont, Assistant Secretary of the Army Manpower and Reserve Affairs.
He enlisted in the Army in 1982 attending Basic Training at Ft. Leonard Wood, MO and received Advanced Individual Training at Fort Benjamin Harrison, IN as a 75B, Personnel Administration Specialist, now 42A, Human Resources Specialist. During his career SGM Byrd attended the Army's First Sergeant Course, Sergeants Major Academy, Battle Staff NCO Course, Air Assault School, Airborne School, Jumpmaster Course, Survival Evasion Resistance and Escape (SERE "High Risk) Course, Attaché Staff Operations course and the Haitian Creole Basic Language Course. He served two years in the Defense Attaché System at the American Embassy in Port au Prince, Haiti as the Operations Coordinator
for the Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA).
SGM Byrd holds an A.S in General Studies from Central Texas College and a B.S in
Liberal Arts from Excelsior College of New York. His military awards include the
Bronze Star Medal, Defense Meritorious Service Medal with two oak leaf clusters, Meritorious
Service Medal with four oak leaf clusters, Joint Service commendation Medal, the Army
Commendation medal with four oak leaf clusters, Army Achievement Medal with 10 oak leaf clusters, Master Parachutist Badge, Air Assault Badge, Royal Australian and Canadian Parachutist badges, Army Staff Badge and the Noble Patron of Armor Medal.
SGM Byrd and Angela will remain in the D.C. area where he plans to take a couple of months off and then continue his M.A. in Business and Organizational Security Management.
Photo right - Mr. Thomas R. Lamont, ASA M&RA, Angela R. Byrd, PaYS Program Manager and SGM Michael L. Byrd, Sr, Senior Enlisted Advisor to the ASA M&RA
Charlotte Motor Speedway Launches the YES Program Season
Photo left - Tony Schumacher and Jimmie Johnson share a laugh during a press conference at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord NC to kick off the NHRA and NASCAR playoffs.
(HHP/Harold Hinson) Charlotte Motor Speedway.
"You know the Army is the strength of the Nation, and the Soldiers are the strength of our Army. This Army-NHRA partnership provides Americans a platform to experience the power, speed, teamwork and technology that drives that strength. We plan to get past this and put ourselves in position to win the championship" Tony Schumacher said during the Charlotte race.
Attending the Army Youth & Education Services (Y.E.S.) program at the Charlotte, NC zMAX Dragway was Howard Stone, Lockheed Martin, and Retired Army First Sergeant Ted Stone. The program is held on the track grounds and local high school, college-aged students and educators participate in the Y.E.S. presentations. The event held in the U.S. Army's Strength in Action Zone features Top Fuel driver Tony Schumacher, other NHRA representatives, U.S. Army Soldier local heroes and PaYS partner representatives. They share their stories of real world lessons and triumphs to success with the assembled audience.
Center of Influencers are invited to take advantage of the fully interactive fitness, educational and other technical components provided at the 24th year of the NHRA's Y.E.S program.
Photo right - Retired Army First Sergeant Ted Stone, Tony Schumacher, and Howard Stone, Lockheed Martin, at the Charlotte race
Howard Stone shared this with the PaYS Team: "I want to graciously thank you for the fantastic time we had this weekend.
From the moment we arrived to the time we left, everyone we met were very
hospitable. Erica Piernas, CPT Schulz, Yves-Maria Daley, CPT Johnson, Israel, Mike Lewis and Tony Schumacher, were all fantastic. This is definitely something my brother and I would like to participate in again and especially the Friday "YES" activities"
America's Army: Proving Grounds Game Launched on Steam
America's Army (www.americasarmy.com) products use innovative technology to provide authentic and entertaining Army experiences that reflect the lives, training, technology, skills, careers and values of a United States Army Soldier. The flagship is the America's Army PC Game, the official game of the U.S. Army. It's rated T for Teen and can be downloaded free from Steam. The Army launched America's Army in July of 2002, America's Army: Special Forces in 2003, and America's Army 3 in June 2009. America's Army: Proving Grounds, launched in August of 2013, brings the best features of the previous games to a new AA environment that stresses small unit tactical maneuvers. The America's Army Comic series (http://comics.americasarmy.com) lets readers further explore the America's Army storyline and delve deep into character plots of Soldiers' lives when deployed and at home.
Huntsville, AL (August 29, 2013) -- The U.S. Army today announced that America's Army: Proving Grounds (AA:PG), the next version of its official Army game, is now available in open beta for download on Steam (http://store.steampowered.com/app/203290). Players can register their Soldier name for the game at the America's Army: Proving Ground website (www.americasarmy.com/register) and then jump into the Army action.
"We took a back to basics approach that highlights a move, shoot, communicate system within a fun gaming experience that echoes teamwork-based Army training," said Marsha Berry, Project Manager for America's Army. "Just like in the Army, America's Army: Proving Grounds focuses on creating elite, well trained Soldiers that will complete the missions as a fine-tuned team beginning with smaller, focused exercises and advancing up to larger, more complex exercises."
Bringing the best features of the previous versions to a new America's Army environment, AA: PG stresses small unit tactical maneuvers and training that reflects the current day Army. America's Army: Proving Grounds (AA: PG) showcases the Army by emphasizing Army Values, teamwork, training and completing the objectives through gameplay that reflects the Soldier's Creed.
The America's Army game features:
• Fast-paced Battledrill Exercises (BDX) for small engagements of 6 players vs. 6 players. These maps focus on the basic movements and maneuvers, allowing players to learn how the enemy might react and adjust their strategies for future engagements
• Forward Line Operation (FLO) training for 12 vs. 12 players. These larger mission-based exercises require players to use several skills learned in their Battledrills to achieve success
• New weapons such as M9 and Remington 870 MCS shotgun and M14EBR-RI sniper rifle, which join AA favorites such as the M4/M4A1 and the M249 light machine gun
Set in a fictional country, The Republic of the Ostregals, players are in the role of an 11B Infantryman practicing combat maneuvers at JTC Griffin, a fabricated training MOUT (military operations on urban terrain) environment created by Conex modular containers and found materials. This training is crucial to the player's success as part of a Long Range Combined Arms – Recon (LRCA-R) unit, a full spectrum capable team that embarks on special operations missions behind enemy lines.
The America's Army Comics series (http://comics.americasarmy.com/) available on the web and for mobile devices, unveils the storyline that influences the plot for the game's missions and maps and gives the player a better understanding of their assignment and the challenges they will face. By reading the comics, players learn the saga of American forces deployed to Czervenia, a tiny foreign nation in the middle of a chaotic conflict. From a seemingly insignificant nation of Czervenia, President-General Adzic and his army set upon a campaign of annihilation against the neighboring Republic of the Ostregals, setting in motion a mysterious plan that could change the course of world power forever. America's Army must create new experimental combat teams, forged together in secret Proving Grounds, and uncover the General's insidious plot before time runs out.