Wednesday, October 27, 2010

So, what exactly is Derek up to?

I've gotten this question a few times:
What is Derek doing now that he's graduated from basic training?
I'll do my best to explain it as far as I know and hopefully I'll get Derek to do a post again sometime because I got a lot of great feedback from the last one!

First and foremost, all soldiers are exactly that: soldiers. They attend basic training to become warriors, to learn war strategy, and are taught fighting tactics. Every soldier also chose an MOS (Military Occupational Specialty) upon enlisting in the army, which is basically a specific job that the soldier will have while enlisted in the army. According to there are over 150 jobs to chose from including pilots, truck drivers, and plumbers. Derek is a 25B, Information Technology Specialist, (aka computer nerd).

Derek's MOS is a part of the Signal Brigade

Upon graduation from basic training each soldier will then attend AIT (Advanced Individual Training) to be trained specifically for their MOS. Each MOS has a varying length of training after basic: military police training is nine weeks, while some special forces have training for 43 weeks. Derek's AIT is 20 weeks.

This is where he lives, basically like a college dorm.

So, it just took me that long to say that Derek is in computer school and will be until the middle of March. The atmosphere is definitely relaxed compared to the rigorous schedule of basic training, but he's still pretty busy. He gets up at 4am, has PT, sits in class, studies, goes to bed, repeats. He does have many more privileges like having his cell phone and personal computer in the evenings (if they have time) and will have the opportunity to earn more (civilian clothes on weekends, passes to leave post) in about a week.

This is the hang-out area outside the barracks. 
Picnic tables, a grill, basically a place to chill out.

The classes that Derek's taking are right up his alley. He actually already has at least one of the certifications that's required. He still had to take the class and pass the test, which he did. But he was the one making study guides and helping others learn the material. The best part is that Derek will end up with a few certifications that he's been wanting to get for quite some time, but finding the time and money to do it wasn't easy (some of the Cisco exams in themselves can cost up to $1,400. Even just the basic certifications though will run $300ish easily). These certificates will obviously prepare him to do his army job, but will most definitely boost up his civilian resume.

So, this is what he's up to. I really am going to get a little questionnaire to him to fill out, maybe over the weekend when he has more time. If you have a question, let me know or post it in the comments. He'll read them and will answer them (right honey?!)!



  1. Thanks for sharing this. My son (he is 17, 18 in January) has told us he is either going into the Air Force or Army. If he chooses Army, this is what he wants to do, Information Technology Specialist. This is giving me a little glimpse ahead of time of what all is involved. Again, thank you for sharing.

  2. Feel free to email me with any questions about army or 25B or just IT and computer jobs in general and I would be glad to answer as best I can.

  3. Wow, B447.. that brings back a lot of memories. I spent a little over a year seeing the same view as those pictures.

    At least they finally repainted that doghouse.. for a while it was pink, thanks to a rivalry with 551.


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