GRAFENWOEHR, Germany –
Thirty-one field grade officers from four countries graduated from the U.S. Army Command and General Staff Officers Course Common Core July 2, coming together virtually to celebrate their year-long all digital platform training that culminated under the still-looming COVID-19 pandemic.
This year’s class included students from U.S. Army Europe, Central and Africa and international military students in the first-ever multi-national cohort with officers from Ukraine, Kosovo and North Macedonia.
“As the only CGSC (Detachment) in Europe, we are very proud to contribute to the strengthening of our strategic relationship with NATO allies and partners,” said Lt. Col. David Gladish, commander of the 7th Intermediate Level Education Detachment, 7th Mission Support Command. “The exchange of ideas with partner militaries was invaluable, and we look forward to having more international students in our classrooms in the future.”
The 7th ILE DET, stationed in Grafenwoehr, Germany, hosted the all-virtual platform graduation ceremony that included a commencement address given by Brig. Gen. Wanda Williams, commander of the 7th MSC.
“Your graduation from CGSC is a great achievement that will serve as the foundation for your next step in your military career,” said Williams. “Remember, not just only your next steps but for all the Soldiers that you lead; Remind your Soldiers that military education is critical to their career advancements.”
ILE is part of the Command and General Staff Officers Course which includes completion of the common core curriculum and required career field, branch, and functional area training and education.
The 7th ILE DET, one of three U.S. Army Reserve ILE units and the only ILE option in Europe, offers the common core portion every year in Grafenwoehr to promotable captains and majors. This year’s class graduated officers that took the entire course virtually, a course that normally includes more than six weeks of in-person classroom instruction spread out through three phases during the year. It was a first for both students and staff of the 7th ILE DET’s CGSOC.
“By utilizing multiple virtual platforms, our students could continue to work together to solve complex problems, even though they couldn’t do it huddled over the same map board in the same classroom,” said Gladish. “It is not lost on me that the dedication of our instructors and staff to the mission of educating senior military officers is unmatched in the Army Reserve.”
The 7th ILE DET-led virtual graduation carried through effortlessly after a full year of distance learning under a global pandemic.
“Although you have interacted virtually, the relationships you have built are very important,” said Williams. “The integration of our international students into the ILE Common Core is an example of what we do to be stronger together.”