By Maj. William Allred
| 412th Theater Engineer Command | Jan. 12, 2021
The 412th Theater Engineer Command (TEC) and Warfighter Support Division (WSD) have modernized Army Reserve geospatial intelligence procedures via Engineer-Focused Intelligence Training (ENFIT) at the Army Geospatial Center (AGC) in Alexandria, Virginia.
While attending either physically or virtually, the 412th TEC and subordinate unit Soldiers use updated geospatial analytic tools to provide their commanders with rapid terrain analysis — geospatial data being facts about occurrences, objects, and events that are associated with a particular location on the earth's surface.
Maj. Gen. Stephen Strand, commander, 412th TEC, emphasized that the program provides new methods to improve top-tier planning for the Army Reserve, especially since the TECs restructured.
“The new TEC structure provides more Soldiers to this critical theater-level capability and TEC responsibility,” said Strand. “The ENFIT program significantly enhances the geospatial engineering capabilities of the TEC. It's a great program to develop the bench needed to maintain proficiency for years to come.”
Col. Richard Stubblefield, a lead intelligence officer with the 412th TEC, explained that ENFIT goes a step further to prepare these specialized individuals with applied techniques.
“One of my goals was to transition the ENFIT training to more real-world focused and less classroom instruction,” said Stubblefield. “In order to do this, we implemented a baseline course of instruction which used Subject Matter Experts from AGC to provide classroom training designed to ensure all of our (Geospatial Engineers) were at the same baseline as far as competency and knowledge. Once this was complete, we moved our training from a classroom environment to hands-on training using live systems and AGC instructors.”
Lt. Col. Kevin C. Schreiber, a deputy intelligence officer with the 412th TEC, said that ENFIT teaches Soldiers geospatial engineering tasks and how “to create products from geospatial data that commanders use during their strategic, operational, and tactical decision-making processes.”
According to Stubblefield and Schreiber, deployed Engineer soldiers need to provide “more accurate, relevant and timely geospatial data” so commanders can make “more informed command decisions” in a foreign or domestic environment.
“Rather than change our communication strategy,” said Schreiber. “ENFIT augments in-theater mission communication by providing the commander the geospatial products needed to have a more relevant and accurate common operating picture.”
Schreiber also stated that ENFIT provides the means for current and future Army Reserve engineering operations to gain faster, more accurate information for planning purposes, not just faster data in general.
“As the future battlefield unveils itself with more technology and more items to track, the need for geospatial data to be produced in a timelier manner will become a constant,” said Schreiber.
Strand reinforced ENFIT’s necessity and viability as it “provides a training platform” to ready “current and additional personnel” for theater-level missions.
“It makes the TEC even better at one of the foundational pillars required of the Engineer Regiment for the Army,” he said.
The training looks to spread in the coming months as the 412th TEC is not the only unit that can benefit from its training, according to Strand.
“ENFIT is certainly appropriate for other engineers throughout the Army,” he said. “While no other deployable unit has the depth of geospatial engineering structure that is placed in the two TECs, there is a developmental path for those Soldiers that starts at the Engineer Battalions.”
ENFIT continues with a full class 6-7 February 2021 in Alexandria with plans for more throughout the year.