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State of TRACOM, June 2010
Tuesday, 08 June 2010 16:00

Greetings to all Marines and students of the SFMCA

Quite a lot has happened since last reporting cycle, with TRACOM being a hive of industry as we count down to the IC/IM.  The busy guys and girl at the SFMCA are now able to take a little breather as we have caught up on all the urgent material(manual revisions) and we get ourselves ready for the next round. We have a large set of objectives and goals we are looking to accomplish in the next six months so I doubt there will be much down time for many of the TRACOM staff.

Most importantly, I have just read the 'Dant's State of the SFMC and am very pleased to see that I have had a part of the Mess Dress dinner named after my family. I have no idea what we could have done to deserve such a high honor but I will of course accept the recognition humbly on behalf of my family..... Unless of course there is the slightest, remotest possibility that in the US, Corn O'Brien is just a varietal name or a recipe of some description, but I much prefer to believe the former...

Manual Revisions
We have finally completed the first round of the 2010 SFMC manual revisions and these have been placed into the care of the G-3 Officer for editing, inserting and formatting.  There has been a fair amount of effort applied already - well before MGENNeimeyer starts his hours of detailing -but by the time students and interested parties get to see the finished work in August, the many hours spent in creating, discussing, designing, developing, researching, revising, formatting, drafting and redrafting is enough to make anyone's head spin. But I am sure everyone will well appreciates the amount of effort that goes into the maintenance of these important resource materials. We are proud of our Resource Library and I believe we all have every right to be. Others may copy - others may envy - but there is only one, unique SFMC Resource Library.

This first cycle should see some important revisions  but of most interest will be the additional material that has been added. Manuals that have new material of varying degrees are - SU; SO; CE; Advanced Leadership; PD; METL; MOS; AE; and A&E. Of major interest will be the new material that has been added extensively to both the AE and A&E (Arms & Equipment Manuals) where the efforts and achievements of the TRACOM R&D team stand out. The SFMC finally has its own range of Aerocraft that I am sure all will agree they not only looks the part, but well suit the needs of the Corps in our fictional world. Coupled with some serious new ordnance added to our armory, we are going to be able to present to the Corps an excellent and exciting range of equipment that will be only further added to over time. August will also see the launch of the 'new' Marine Basic Training Manual (MBT) which incorporates the original PD/LD and Drill manuals, as well as being added to with some extra material.  This manual will encompass the vast majority of resource for the 'Boot Camp' series of exams (PD-10 etc) and will likely become a well used resource.

The work done in AE and A&E is the premise of the future for us. This is the first round in revisions that will enable us to eventually bring a solid semblance of uniformity of our equipment and material with later revision of AR & CE  bringing those manuals in line with the new aspects associated with AE and A&E especially.  Keep your eyes peeled for a lot more to come off the conveyor belt that the TRACOM R&D is these days, as these very clever people get themselves geared up to keep the ball rolling in terms of new and revised equipment. We sincerely hope everyone gets some pleasure and enjoyment form the work that has been done thus far.

MOSC Certification
This new incentive has been received extremely well - with in excess of 110 individual certifications since 12 May being completed. Marines show an avid eagerness to have record of their qualifications and the program is recommended to any Marine who wishes to show personal pride in having achieved a certain standard of qualification. At the very least, every Marine in the Corps should be applying for MOS310 - Infantryman, as this is the base standard level of achievement that each and every Marine -  regardless of rank or qualification - should have pinned to their wall. Add to that your chosen DMOS (and if we are all really truthful with ourselves, I am sure we can all admit to having an image in our minds of the role we would BEST like to have in the Corps were we real) and with just these two qualifications, you will stand out as an exceptional Marine. the lines are free; the database is working - so what's stopping you from applying ? (and yes, I know... you need to do more courses... it's OK, that's what we are here for!)

Student of the Year Award
The SotY Award period has almost ended. With the announcement of the Student of the Month for May, we will gather together the winners of this last year to enable us to announce the SotY at the IM. the last year ahs seen a large number of students pass through our schools and for those who have achieved the top honors, we pass congratulations on your efforts.  The new year began as of 1 June and so the SotM for June will be the first in line for nomination to SotY 2011. Good luck to you all!

New Courses
We will shortly release a small round of new course material. this will include exams for Officer Development, Aerospace and the Non Commissioned Officers Academy. Watch the lists for their releases. And while on this subject, it is prudent to point out that with so much new material being added to many manuals, we can expect that there will also follow a flurry of new exams. But we would also like to remind you that the SFMC Academy works on the premise of quality and not quantity  and while we may not be firing out courses weekly, the courses we do publish are generally very well founded and well constructed, aimed at educating the SF Marine. 

SFMC Scholarship
With the IM looming, it is almost the last chance anyone will have to make application to this very worthy source of funds, this year. We are certain that there must be some worthy individual (or individuals) in our ranks who is in need of some study assistance?  Application is very easy and if you, or anyone you know, has the qualification required to apply for such funds, we would be most keen to hear from you. If you need more information or are unsure of the processes involved, drop me a line.

OK - I reckon that's enough... For those going to IC, much of what you read here will be presented at the Muster, as well a few other 'bits and pieces' we are working on. Keep up the studies and keep sending those exams in for grading. See you all on campus.

Brigadier Bruce O'Brien