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Author Topic: Encampment Intensity Split-Off Thread Attempt  (Read 3681 times)
Jester
Seasoned Member

Posts: 306

« on: June 18, 2018, 01:46:32 PM »

As the esteemed esquire Ned alluded to in the other thread, we answered that question and then went off on our own azimuth regarding intensity (mostly focused on the nebulous term "yelling").  I'm pretty passionate about this stuff (encampment is my favorite part of CAP and the part I think does the most good for the most cadets) and think we would be well-served to have an in-depth discussion on it.  If a mod could pull the relevant posts from the other topic onto this one (I assume that's possible but I don't know for sure) I would greatly appreciate it.

We don't do a great job of professionally discussing things like this.  In a perfect world, the Volunteer would be more like a "professional" CAP journal where peers discuss the issues (it mainly serves to recruit the already recruited, but I digress).  So I'd like some feedback on if I'm right, wrong, or anywhere in between and why.

In a nutshell, we need to have a common definition and conditions associated with the raised voice:

- The voice is not raised to the point of injury (to the speaker's vocal cords or the listener's ear).  It also is not to be used in the immediate "bubble" of the listener.  A good rule of thumb (I think, let me know if I'm off base) is that a circle drawn around the listener with the radius being that person's arm-length is a good definition for a "bubble".

- The content is more important than the delivery volume.  Train staff in the relevant information regarding this subject (raise voice at the group, don't single out one person, etc) and this should be a non-issue.

- The raised voice is an intentional tool in the intensity toolbox.  The tools of presence, volume, expectations, and time from https://youtu.be/6GD7wf5kwu4 are an excellent guideline, along with the "Effective Training Box" model I've already stolen.  The tool is selected for a specific reason to accomplish a specific purpose.  It isn't because the cadre member is frustrated and lashing out (this requires mentorship, supervision, and training which should be happening anyway).  Remember, this is a learning experience at all levels.

- The encampment program should be a good entry-level introduction to the military training model.  This means age-appropriate.  This means varying levels of intensity appropriate to the situation.  It does not mean that the raised voice is replaced in the toolbox by Eskimo kisses because their helicopter parents don't want their precious bunnies scolded.  If a cadet never enters a training program again that uses and requires Level 1 intensity, then fine; they can do the cyber NCSAs, COS, etc to their heart's content.  If the first time they ever catch a raised voice is day one of PJOC, you've failed to prepare them. 

- I have little-to-no concern about the cultural changes in today's youth.  Life is still stressful.  100 pounds will be 100 pounds no matter what you try to do to change it.  Cadets are going to have to do some physical, emotional, and mental heavy lifting at some point.  The very least we can do for them is get them to lift the empty bar at the beginning and add appropriate excess weight to push their limits, not just say "we shouldn't lift heavy things anymore, we have cars to carry these things for us today".  Just know your people and don't add so much weight you break them.  Linear progression and progressive overload are not just weightlifting concepts. 

- Cadets want to be challenged.  Many of them join for this kind of thing.  They want to be tested.  I've overheard cadets (that weren't Superman by any stretch) complain that encampment was too easy and a letdown.  If encampment is the full immersion into the cadet experience and we nerf encampment, the cadet program is doomed to failure by logical extension. 
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1_skinny_boi
Newbie

Posts: 4
Unit: SWR-AR-040

« Reply #1 on: June 18, 2018, 06:49:41 PM »

As the esteemed esquire Ned alluded to in the other thread, we answered that question and then went off on our own azimuth regarding intensity (mostly focused on the nebulous term "yelling").  I'm pretty passionate about this stuff (encampment is my favorite part of CAP and the part I think does the most good for the most cadets) and think we would be well-served to have an in-depth discussion on it.  If a mod could pull the relevant posts from the other topic onto this one (I assume that's possible but I don't know for sure) I would greatly appreciate it.

We don't do a great job of professionally discussing things like this.  In a perfect world, the Volunteer would be more like a "professional" CAP journal where peers discuss the issues (it mainly serves to recruit the already recruited, but I digress).  So I'd like some feedback on if I'm right, wrong, or anywhere in between and why.

In a nutshell, we need to have a common definition and conditions associated with the raised voice:

- The voice is not raised to the point of injury (to the speaker's vocal cords or the listener's ear).  It also is not to be used in the immediate "bubble" of the listener.  A good rule of thumb (I think, let me know if I'm off base) is that a circle drawn around the listener with the radius being that person's arm-length is a good definition for a "bubble".

- The content is more important than the delivery volume.  Train staff in the relevant information regarding this subject (raise voice at the group, don't single out one person, etc) and this should be a non-issue.

- The raised voice is an intentional tool in the intensity toolbox.  The tools of presence, volume, expectations, and time from https://youtu.be/6GD7wf5kwu4 are an excellent guideline, along with the "Effective Training Box" model I've already stolen.  The tool is selected for a specific reason to accomplish a specific purpose.  It isn't because the cadre member is frustrated and lashing out (this requires mentorship, supervision, and training which should be happening anyway).  Remember, this is a learning experience at all levels.

- The encampment program should be a good entry-level introduction to the military training model.  This means age-appropriate.  This means varying levels of intensity appropriate to the situation.  It does not mean that the raised voice is replaced in the toolbox by Eskimo kisses because their helicopter parents don't want their precious bunnies scolded.  If a cadet never enters a training program again that uses and requires Level 1 intensity, then fine; they can do the cyber NCSAs, COS, etc to their heart's content.  If the first time they ever catch a raised voice is day one of PJOC, you've failed to prepare them. 

- I have little-to-no concern about the cultural changes in today's youth.  Life is still stressful.  100 pounds will be 100 pounds no matter what you try to do to change it.  Cadets are going to have to do some physical, emotional, and mental heavy lifting at some point.  The very least we can do for them is get them to lift the empty bar at the beginning and add appropriate excess weight to push their limits, not just say "we shouldn't lift heavy things anymore, we have cars to carry these things for us today".  Just know your people and don't add so much weight you break them.  Linear progression and progressive overload are not just weightlifting concepts. 

- Cadets want to be challenged.  Many of them join for this kind of thing.  They want to be tested.  I've overheard cadets (that weren't Superman by any stretch) complain that encampment was too easy and a letdown.  If encampment is the full immersion into the cadet experience and we nerf encampment, the cadet program is doomed to failure by logical extension. 

Nailed it  :clap:
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abdsp51
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 2,547
Unit: Classified

« Reply #2 on: June 19, 2018, 11:22:43 AM »

Encampment in and of itself is stress inducing not to mention the packed schedule.  You don't need to add to it by yelling or using a raised voice.  And no encampment should not nor is an entry level introduction to military training model. 

Sorry but you can run successful stress inducing and challenging activities without yelling or using raised voices and having a pseudo basic training enviroment. 

I have run successful training events without the senior or caret cadre yelling or using raised voices.  In fact the entire cadet cadre was told at the begining that if they yelled, raised their voice outside of safety reasons or went pseudo DI on their charges they'd be canned and sent home..


Yelling or the tap dance "raised voice" is a dated tool and needs to be placed on the shelf unless there is a safety issue.
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kwe1009
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Posts: 915

« Reply #3 on: June 19, 2018, 11:53:32 AM »

Yelling (or demeaning talk of any kind) really doesn't have a place in a youth leadership training organization.  Effective leaders rarely, if ever, have to yell.  In a training environment yelling is used to increase stress to test your ability to perform.  Encampment is not about increasing stress to your breaking point.  It is a teaching environment.

The purpose of encampment is not to introduce cadets to a military training model, it is to introduce them to CAP and teach them the basics of being a cadet (marching, uniform, customs, etc.).  Unless you are dealing with a life or death situation I do not see the need for yelling at a student. 

Please do not try and compare military basic training with encampment.  They have different goals and are dealing with adults.  Encampment is not a tool to separate quality people from everyone else like basic training is.  Encampment is an event to teach young teens to be a CAP cadet.  It also has to deal with a huge rang of maturity levels and must fit all levels. 

No matter how difficult you make encampment there will always be cadets who found it too easy and cadets who found it too hard.  When I was in USAF basic training I found it to be way too easy but other members of my flight struggled and some didn't make it.  The goal of BMT is to separate and remove those who can't make it, the goal of encampment is to have everyone succeed and learn.  Two very different goals.
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Jester
Seasoned Member

Posts: 306

« Reply #4 on: June 19, 2018, 01:01:33 PM »

I'm well aware that encampment is not basic training, which is why I didn't say that it was.  Also, the immediate connection to yelling to "demeaning talk" is... interesting.

CAP is a military-type organization, and the cadet program is rooted in the USAF model.  There are many niches regarding youth organizations.  We need to own ours, which is an AF-modeled military cadet program.  Being everything to everybody is a route to failure, and turning encampment into a jamboree hug-a-thon is cutting the legs out from under the encampment program because we don't have the sand to create an appropriately difficult program that challenges and builds physically, mentally, and morally tough people. 

This is the breeding of weakness.  It's making cadets who think it's supposed to be all fun, all the time.  It's creating future adults who will continue to slip the standards lower if/when they become seniors (CPFT in 15-20 years will be synchronized breathing in a 3-second cadence, probably).  You're teaching them that they're supposed to be all up in arms about mere words ("mercy, somebody called me a basic!" as they stagger to their padded fainting chair), or that somebody raising their voice at them is some kind of personal attack.  I've never said it should be all yelling, all the time.  I simply said that it's a tool that can be used with the proper training for the proper situation.

The culture of youth is changing.  Got it.  That doesn't mean we don't hold the line in our organization when it comes to making tough and responsible citizens. 

Encampment is not and should not be an "introduction to CAP".  They have a Curry (at minimum), therefore I consider them introduced to the organization and it's time to start stretching their limits. 

If they get their feelings hurt over getting yelled at, good.  That's the first step to build a callous once they realize they didn't die or experience the slightest amount of pain.
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ol'fido
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Posts: 1,884
Unit: DOTCOTE.

« Reply #5 on: June 19, 2018, 01:19:02 PM »

Most acceptable yelling at an encampment or other CAP activity fall into two categories: Warning of imminent danger and conveying information from one person to a large group of people(or overcoming ambient noise).

What is usually not acceptable is using yelling as a training tool. It doesn't train and usually just makes the user a tool.

Most people who work at encampments a lot will recognize the difference between the two kinds. It's usually people who are new to the encampment experience or are coming in to the encampment with preconceived notions of what the activity should be that have difficulty understanding this.

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Lt. Col. Randy L. Mitchell
Historian, Group 1, IL-006
Jester
Seasoned Member

Posts: 306

« Reply #6 on: June 19, 2018, 01:24:48 PM »

Pages 10-21 should be required reading (the whole thing is excellent, but for the purposes of the current thread):

https://www.gocivilairpatrol.com/static/media/cms/CAPP_6015_5F3814CB09867.pdf
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Ned
Resident Philosopher

Posts: 2,184

« Reply #7 on: June 19, 2018, 01:35:42 PM »

I have worked very, very hard over the years to create our intensity doctrine and help communicate the appropriate "look and feel" of encampment; primarily to help standardize the experience between the wings.  Which used to vary even more than it does now.  Clearly I have some more work to do.  Reasonable minds can certainly differ about some aspects of encampment intensity, but I think we should at least be able to come to a consensus as to whether the occasional raised voice is a Good Thing or a Bad Thing.  And it appears that we are not quite there yet.  People I respect come down on both sides of the issue.

But some sort of consistent military experience at encampment is important to our colleagues in the AF, who generously allow advanced grade for enlistees who have been through our encampment (and go on to achieve the Mitchell).  It was at their request that we began to reform and standardize the encampment experience several years ago.  We also describe the problem of standardization in the introduction on the first page of Cadet Encampment Guide

Encampment is designed to be "regimented," using a military training model based CAP and AF traditions.  (CAPP 60-70, para 1.1c).  In a positive, age-appropriate manner, of course.  It deliberately operates at a higher intensity level than most cadets will experience in their cadet careers.  We deliberately employ strictness, rigor, and a sense of urgency to reinforce military bearing and to encourage teamwork.

I suspect we are all in substantial agreement on the vision described in our doctrine, but we do not yet agree whether the occasional raised voice used to impart rigor and urgency can be part of the model.

And yet the military training model is remarkable -- indeed universally -- consistent over time, culture, and geography.  And invariably includes significant amounts of raised voices and externally-imposed discipline for the trainees.  And this has been so since the first legionnaire met the first centurion in Rome.   



Yelling or the tap dance "raised voice" is a dated tool and needs to be placed on the shelf unless there is a safety issue.

Every single military force in the world disagrees with that statement.  Every single one.  Including our colleagues in the AF.  Not one of them thinks of it as "dated."  None have placed it on the shelf.

Quote
Please do not try and compare military basic training with encampment.  They have different goals and are dealing with adults.  Encampment is not a tool to separate quality people from everyone else like basic training is.  Encampment is an event to teach young teens to be a CAP cadet.  It also has to deal with a huge rang of maturity levels and must fit all levels. 

Non-concur on several levels.  First, while encampment and IET are indeed different animals, encampment and military basic training are comparable in many important ways relevant to the discussion here.  Things like living in a barracks with a group of peers for the first time in their lives, having to wear uniforms waking hours, extremely regimented schedules, exacting and difficult group and individual performance standards, military oriented classes, inspections, dining halls, making a bed in a standardized way, drill and ceremonies instruction, early morning PT, etc., etc., etc..  Even the "fun" things are comparable -- the possibility of an orientation flight, time in the firearm simulator, a trip to MCSS.  All are very comparable, and indeed consume the great majority of the experience both for our cadets and basic trainees.

But perhaps most importantly, ALL of the above is closely supervised by NCOs and officers who offer immediate guidance, feedback, and assistance.  Sometimes in a raised voice.

Further, the purpose of basic training is NOT to sort the wheat from the chaff (although it also has that effect), it is to provide training and discipline to new recruits to allow them to contribute to their service.  Seriously, even if there were some other way to magically identify recruits who are unsuitable for the service, the others would still underdo basic training to become a cohesive, disciplined, airman.

We have had many discussions on this and related intensity topics here on CT for well over a decade.  And I am convinced that if we were all standing around together at an encampment watching training, we would almost always agree on when a given intensity level / voice intonation was appropriate or not.  But here on the internet, we lose the essential look and feel of the interaction and the words "yelling" and even "intensity" are poor words when it comes to relaying what actually happened.

Still trying to solve that part of the problem.

Ned Lee
Encampment Enthusiast

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Jester
Seasoned Member

Posts: 306

« Reply #8 on: June 19, 2018, 01:39:05 PM »

Would an NCSA or even a region-level "encampment instructor course" or something like that help?  I see pluses and minuses to it but haven't given it severe thought.
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Eclipse
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Posts: 28,614

« Reply #9 on: June 19, 2018, 01:54:54 PM »

Would an NCSA or even a region-level "encampment instructor course" or something like that help?  I see pluses and minuses to it but haven't given it severe thought.

I think it would, however if it was not "required", like actually required, then the effect would probably be
like most other "required" training, mixed at best.

And if it was "required" like actually required, the pool of available people which is already far too low,
would shrink even further, and much like the rest of CAP, there is no way to guarantee continuity.

Even when CAP-USAF had oversight, things were still inconsistent wing-to-wing and even year to year, but
now that they are largely out of the picture, CAP has lost that check valve.
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Jester
Seasoned Member

Posts: 306

« Reply #10 on: June 19, 2018, 02:09:29 PM »

Would an NCSA or even a region-level "encampment instructor course" or something like that help?  I see pluses and minuses to it but haven't given it severe thought.

I think it would, however if it was not "required", like actually required, then the effect would probably be
like most other "required" training, mixed at best.

And if it was "required" like actually required, the pool of available people which is already far too low,
would shrink even further, and much like the rest of CAP, there is no way to guarantee continuity.

Even when CAP-USAF had oversight, things were still inconsistent wing-to-wing and even year to year, but
now that they are largely out of the picture, CAP has lost that check valve.

True.  The whole point should be to spread the "official" encampment methodology throughout the wings, but that's a several-year adventure, if it ever happens.

I've thought that if a wing has two encampments per year, then one encampment should serve as the staff training for those who will staff the next one, which will serve as the staff training for those who will serve on the one after that.  So winter encampment is staffed by those who went through the Cadre Course during the summer, and those in the cadre course over the winter would be integrated the next summer.

This basically means that both encampments within a wing would have to standardize as much as possible, which given the gang-turf mentality that pops into these kinds of things, will also probably never happen. 
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abdsp51
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« Reply #11 on: June 19, 2018, 03:42:29 PM »

Col Lee you have done great work in Cadets Programs and the results from what I have seen speak for themself.  But there are major differences between encampment and BMT.  Yes the AF wants certain things in the encampment curriculum.  It is one thing for an MTI at Lackland to "yell" at a flt of 30-40 people and another for Cadet Snuffy at encampment..  My experience with the later has been cadets especially cadet cadre yelling simply because they can.

Not everyone does MTI duty and actually as of a few years ago they upped the requirements for it after the BMT scandal.  I can say that having staffed and ina couple cases planned and led activities that when "yelling" was removed it was far more successful. 

I'm all for a structured encampment regime however yelling especially when there is no imminent dange just to yell or prove a point is counter productive. I can't even recall the last time I had to yell as a training tool in daily job or CAP.
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Ned
Resident Philosopher

Posts: 2,184

« Reply #12 on: June 19, 2018, 04:18:55 PM »

But there are major differences between encampment and BMT. 
 
Of course. 

But my point is that there both major differences but also "major similarities," which are directly comparable.  As I wrote in the CAPP 60-15, MTIs go to months of schooling before working directly with trainees, while the typical CAP senior member or cadet cadre supervising cadets at encampment might have mere weeks of training, and sometimes little or none.  AF Trainees typically range in age from 17-24, while our cadets are typically 13-15 at encampment.  I can only agree that those two groups are very different in their ability to benefit from, let alone tolerate, higher levels of military intensity.

I'm pretty sure we agree completely on this point.

 
Quote
It is one thing for an MTI at Lackland to "yell" at a flt of 30-40 people and another for Cadet Snuffy at encampment.

To make the comparison fair, let's modify it to read "It is one thing for an MTI at Lackland [to raise his/her voice] at a flight of 30-40 people and another for a CAP cadet flight sergeant to [raise his/her voice] at a flight of 15-20 cadets at encampment."

(Trying to make sure we are comparing a group criticism with a group criticism.)

So, why do you think so?  I guess this may be the heart of our disagreement.  Clearly, any work with our cadets has to be positive and age appropriate, but at least in other youth training situations there appears to be fairly wide agreement that fair and age-appropriate constructive criticism directed to a group (as opposed to an individual) is both safe and effective.  It is hard to me to imagine any of my youth sports coaches not speaking loudly and plainly to the team as a whole when we performed poorly.  Especially when we were together in a group, but even when we were spread out on the field.  "I know you can do better than that" seems an appropriate team-building message, even when delivered in a loud voice tone to help create urgency and focus our attention on our collective performance.


Quote
My experience with the latter has been cadets especially cadet cadre yelling simply because they can.

Again, I think we agree on this part.  Nobody should raise their voice "simply because they can."  Indeed, we have a pretty good discussion of cadets "Going Hollywood" in the 60-15 at p. 15, with the advice that "CP leaders should be alert to this risk and intervene. . . "

Quote
I'm all for a structured encampment regime however yelling especially when there is no imminent dange just to yell or prove a point is counter productive. I can't even recall the last time I had to yell as a training tool in daily job or CAP.

Again, I think we agree on far more than we disagree here.  No one is suggesting that a raised voice should be used if it is counter-productive in a given situation or activity.  And I agree that in the great majority of cadet activities, (Squadron meetings, weekend activities, CAP conferences, most region and national activities, etc.) it would be extremely rare to hear a raised voice.

Ultimately, I think the answer is somewhere between the two extremes -  Raised voices all the time, and never ever use a raised voice unless safety requires it.

A raised voice is just one tool in the intensity toolbox described in pp. 16-18 of the 60-15.  A leader's voice tone and loudness is just one thing that can be used to raise or lower an intensity level to optimize a cadet's task focus and learning.

Thank you for your work with our cadets.  You are making a very real difference in the future on the nation.

Ned Lee
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Ned
Resident Philosopher

Posts: 2,184

« Reply #13 on: June 19, 2018, 04:32:20 PM »

Would an NCSA or even a region-level "encampment instructor course" or something like that help?  I see pluses and minuses to it but haven't given it severe thought.

I can only agree, but we could never make the numbers work.  Even on a regional basis.  And assuming that what we are really running is a "train the trainers" course to help communicate intensity look and feel, we would probably want to have at least 2-3 graduates of such a course at every one of the forty-ish encampments wings and regions run every year.  Even moving folks two states over for a weekend class would consume the lion's share of each wing's CP budget.

Sure, we could do some of it, at least, on line.  But that just returns to the difficult question of how we effectively communicate an intangible "look and feel" to our CP leaders nationwide through written or AV media.

Most of us know "how encampment works" because we have been to one.  Or more.  In our own wing.  I was surprised when I first became a Region DCP how breathtakingly few of us ever get to an encampment in another wing.  I made it a point to make to as many encampments in my region as I could (never did get to AK or HI, but had trusted agents and videos to help me understand their encampment cultures), and it amazed me how different they could be.  Astonishingly different encampments were held just a 100 miles apart.

Now I have responsibility (shared with my NHQ volunteer and corporate colleagues) to help ensure a relatively uniform encampment experience nationwide.  As you can see, we have not yet reached a consensus on some parts of it.
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Trenzalorian
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Posts: 102
Unit: NY-406

« Reply #14 on: June 19, 2018, 11:15:52 PM »

NY, when I went in '13, '14 and '15, was extremely tame as far as intensity goes. Shouting, yelling, and the like are very heavily discouraged, with the reasoning being hazing concerns. It looks like it will remain that way this year. I'll have some more discussions about this with my DCC and Commander, but at this point, it's staying tame.
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C/Maj ********
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Blanding
Recruit

Posts: 28
Unit: MER-VA-102

« Reply #15 on: June 20, 2018, 10:48:31 AM »

This is the breeding of weakness.  It's making cadets who think it's supposed to be all fun, all the time.

Isn't it?

Quote from: CAPR 60-1

1.6.5. Fun. CAP should be fun. New friends and great opportunities are the hallmarks of cadet life.
The cadets who work hard in CAP reap the most benefits, but the program should not be another form of
school it needs to be fun, hands-on, rewarding, and exciting. Proper adult supervision, an emphasis on
risk management, and teamwork built upon mutual respect create a safe and fun environment. Every
activity should be fun, for cadets and their adult leaders alike.
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Trenzalorian
Forum Regular

Posts: 102
Unit: NY-406

« Reply #16 on: June 20, 2018, 12:30:03 PM »

This is the breeding of weakness.  It's making cadets who think it's supposed to be all fun, all the time.

Isn't it?

Quote from: CAPR 60-1

1.6.5. Fun. CAP should be fun. New friends and great opportunities are the hallmarks of cadet life.
The cadets who work hard in CAP reap the most benefits, but the program should not be another form of
school it needs to be fun, hands-on, rewarding, and exciting. Proper adult supervision, an emphasis on
risk management, and teamwork built upon mutual respect create a safe and fun environment. Every
activity should be fun, for cadets and their adult leaders alike.

+1.
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C/Maj ********
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NYWG Encampment Cadet Commander 2018
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NERCLS Winter 16/17
NBB '16, Oscar Operators!
Eclipse
Too Much Free Time Award

Posts: 28,614

« Reply #17 on: June 20, 2018, 01:20:52 PM »

"Yelling", per se, literally holds zero weight when the person on the receiving end knows full well that there is
no corporal or further punishment or ramifications beyond the yelling.  Yelling in CAP is the equivalent of
a military-themed amusement park - it's all fun an games to "play Army", but there's no real risk and
everyone knows they can just head for the exit if things get too "real".

Those of us of a certain age with strict parents grew up in a world where corporal punishment was not only common, it was expected, and could be
metered out by not just parents, but others in "loco parentis", so the yelling had an apocalyptic period at the end of the sentence
if you didn't knock it off, and there was no "wait until my lawyer hears of this!" from a 12 year old, as is the case today.

If Sister smacked you with a ruler, or the shop teacher offered you "3 hits or 3 hours" (detention), you took it (probably with the
grounded knowledge that you messed up), and hoped to your deity that "Dad didn't find out", because if he did, it wasn't going to be
"I will give that nun a good talking to..." it was going to probably be a couple more of the same.

Kids today know that there is nothing at the end of the yelling, except, perhaps, a myocardial infarction, and most will just stand there
and wait you out, until you realize you look like an idiot and move on to some other means of persuading the desired behavior.
This is something that is ingrained in them from pre-school, and CAP is not going to change that.

A child persuaded to a behavior via no other means then the threat of corporal punishment, is essentially
a prisoner in that situation.

Couple that with the generalized anxiety disorders and worse that kids are saddle with today.  It is literally impossible to
snap a kid with an anxiety disorder "out of it" by yelling at him in a punitive way, it just makes it worse, on an escalating scale.

This is the world CAP exists in today, accept it or not, this is not a fact you can dispute, and again, I'll be happy to debate
the hows and whys over coffee, but CAP isn't going to be a factor in changing it, and it can't influence or help anyone who
quits before they have a chance to even hear the lessons.

So, with the above said...

For those espousing the "yelling at", it might be interesting to know what, exactly, you think you're supposed to be yelling "about"?

 - Improper uniform wear?

This cadet has been in CAP 3 weeks and received his uniform yesterday. Mom put the nametape on the wrong side as she
sewed it in the car on the way to encampment.


 - Inability to march / drill properly?

His unit staff is made up of 3 moms with no military experience who are barely keeping the doors open as-is,
and didn't understand the directions. The oldest cadet in the unit is a C/SrA.


 - He's late getting up the first morning, and slow to get his hygiene done.

This cadet couldn't get off school and lives 10 hours away, he was up for 17 hours the day before and hasn't
had his medication yet this morning.  BTW, this cadet, like many these days, is up every day at 0600 or earlier and
routinely turns his nightlight off at midnight because of homework he can't start until 10pm, after sports and band, and yes
CAP meetings.


- Cadet isn't running fast enough?  Can't do enough pushups (define "enough")?

- Cadet doesn't dress for the pool because he can't swim.

- Cadet's parents didn't tell him his boss for his summer job called and he has to leave encampment early.

- Cadet arrives 2+ hours late for encampment because his parent, unit CC, etc., had to work, or simply wasn't in a hurry.

- Cadet brings, or doesn't bring, something he should or shouldn't have, because his Unit CC "knows better" and advised him improperly?

- Cadet couldn't afford new boots and the ones he was able to borrow are too small and tore up his feet.

These are not adults, being consistently trained, and who are responsible for their own lives, these are 12-year olds
who in many cases have never spent a night away from home, and whose parent' only have 1/2-an idea what CAP even is.

So...what's all the shouting for?
« Last Edit: June 20, 2018, 01:28:55 PM by Eclipse » Logged


Jester
Seasoned Member

Posts: 306

« Reply #18 on: June 20, 2018, 04:51:57 PM »

True, there's nothing to back it up, because for some reason CAP has equated a set of pushups to a physical assault.  In my view, PT as punishment isn't a big deal when done correctly (and using common-sense guidelines coupled with the training/supervision that apparently isn't happening if you think they can't be taught to use a raised voice correctly).  However, I don't see that changing as CAP policy any time soon, and probably never.  Congratulations, you slipped the standard too far down and now you've cut the legs out from under cadet staff members who have a week or less to establish control and move a group of people through a challenging curriculum (or what should be a challenging curriculum). 

Glad nobody gets the sadsies when their muscles are made to burn for making a dumb choice.   There's no consequences, only happy times no matter what you do (until they push the limit too far and get sent home early.  Sure would be good if you had a plethora of progressive tools available to correct behavior before you got to the nuclear option, but lay in the bed you demanded be made).

And all the hypothetical situations you've outlined have really just proved that some situations aren't appropriate for yelling, not that yelling is never appropriate.  And so they got yelled at for something that wasn't in their span of control?  So what?  They could just suck it up and perform, instead of going "BUT SIRRRRR, MY SOCIO-ECONOMIC STATUS AND A HOST OF OTHER FACTORS MEANS I NEED A PAAAAASSSSS".  Stop giving them excuses to use, they need to learn how to shrug it off and keep moving forward. 
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Jester
Seasoned Member

Posts: 306

« Reply #19 on: June 20, 2018, 04:56:46 PM »

This is the breeding of weakness.  It's making cadets who think it's supposed to be all fun, all the time.

Isn't it?

Quote from: CAPR 60-1

1.6.5. Fun. CAP should be fun. New friends and great opportunities are the hallmarks of cadet life.
The cadets who work hard in CAP reap the most benefits, but the program should not be another form of
school it needs to be fun, hands-on, rewarding, and exciting. Proper adult supervision, an emphasis on
risk management, and teamwork built upon mutual respect create a safe and fun environment. Every
activity should be fun, for cadets and their adult leaders alike.

It is literally impossible to make CAP all fun, all the time for everybody.  Good grief.  "I don't like to run, it's not fun for me."  OK, you still have to participate in order to be in the program.  Without a willingness to suffer hardship and discomfort, nobody would get anywhere.  Might as well introduce that in controlled doses early in the cadet experience.

Yes, most of the program should be fun, but we shouldn't encourage the ability to shy away from the necessary parts that enable us to earn the fun parts.  Doing so is only going to lead to, wait for it... weakness.

And in the process of, and as a result of, completing something challenging and difficult, the cadet may even find that they enjoyed it. 

 
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abdsp51
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« Reply #20 on: June 20, 2018, 06:23:46 PM »

Man, you really need to come out of the stone age and adapt.  In my 20 year career i never did push ups as an form of punishment.  Wait that's because in my career it's not allowed and punishment is adminestered by certain folks.

And you can thank society for the way things are.  Do I think kids these days need to be a little more tougher sure unfortunately yelling at them isn't going to toughen anyone up.

I think your heart may be in the right place, your methods are dated.
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Ned
Resident Philosopher

Posts: 2,184

« Reply #21 on: June 20, 2018, 06:49:28 PM »

True, there's nothing to back it up, because for some reason CAP has equated a set of pushups to a physical assault. 

Let me see if I can help here.  While we continue the discussion of when raised voices may be appropriate at encampment, I need to respond to this to avoid any confusion.

For several years, our Cadet Protection Doctrine stated that physical exercise as punishment ("Drop and Give Me 20") was a form of hazing.  That was unnecessarily confusing and has been corrected in the current version of both the 60-1, and the encampment guidance.  I can certainly see how, in the past, it might have been equated as an equivalent to a physical assault in some circumstances.  But that is no longer the case.

Physical exercise as punishment is nonetheless strictly prohibited at any and all cadet activities, including encampment.  It is not hazing, per se, but is a violation of a best practice, and is almost always treated as a boundary concern rather than hazing.  There are countless tools good leaders have to create group discipline, cohesion, and esprit de corps, but pushups are not one of them in CAP.  We simply removed that particular tool from the tool box.

Think of it this way:  CAP absolutely forbids hazing.  Plus we have another rule that prohibits using physical exercise as punishment.  They are different concepts.

Ned Lee
National CP Manager
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jfkspotting
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« Reply #22 on: June 20, 2018, 10:54:41 PM »

As a flight sergeant this year, this is absolutely ridiculous.
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Eclipse
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« Reply #23 on: June 21, 2018, 12:09:06 AM »

As a flight sergeant this year, this is absolutely ridiculous.

As a flight sergeant this year, you would do well to insure you are familiar with the national curriculum and policies,
and make sure you listen well at RST.
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Jester
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Posts: 306

« Reply #24 on: June 21, 2018, 12:49:39 AM »

As a flight sergeant this year, this is absolutely ridiculous.
Expound.
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Trenzalorian
Forum Regular

Posts: 102
Unit: NY-406

« Reply #25 on: June 21, 2018, 08:32:05 AM »

As a flight sergeant this year, this is absolutely ridiculous.

I'd love to know what you find ridiculous, so we can have a discussion about it this weekend.
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Jester
Seasoned Member

Posts: 306

« Reply #26 on: June 21, 2018, 02:49:50 PM »

As a flight sergeant this year, this is absolutely ridiculous.

I'd love to know what you find ridiculous, so we can have a discussion about it this weekend.

I'd rather him discuss it here if he's comfortable doing so.  It would be interesting to hear from another perspective.
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abdsp51
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« Reply #27 on: June 21, 2018, 03:26:15 PM »

Tick-tock
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LGM30GMCC
Seasoned Member

Posts: 320

« Reply #28 on: June 21, 2018, 04:55:05 PM »

I have seen this debate since I was a cadet, which was now more time ago than I usually care to admit to myself...

That being said, I can see the arguments for building an intensity into an activity like encampment though I think what people are often really going after is challenge. Challenge is one of the key traits of cadet life so I'm on board with that. Fun is also one of the traits so it's finding a balance since one is not supposed to supersede the other, they are all equal.

So if we want to add elements of a military training model without the use of voice-based intensity (yelling, etc) how do we go about doing that?

I would argue I am in a career field that has zero yelling involved, but very high standards and expectations. (It goes along with the territory.) Much of the stress in our training was based on time constraints (very short ones in some cases), excessive information overwhelming us and forcing us to sift through what was presented to pick out what we needed, and a lack of information from which we had to extrapolate what to do in a given situation. I would also argue these are much greater challenges than "Can I put up with someone yelling at me for X number of days?" I put up with some of that for 4 weeks at field training...and 2 years off and on in college. It was neither particularly effective at training, nor productive in developing me as a leader. In fact, of the incident I remember most where it was used against me there was some amount of embarrassment on my part for screwing up, but the AFROTC cadet officers doing the grilling actually had other cadets (from the Army ROTC) looking down at them with a view of "Who are you to tear into that guy? You really don't know much more about anything than he does." I have also met both of those cadet officers since my commission, work with one of them now, and they have both expressed that it was inappropriate, ineffective, and really just perpetuating a stupid stereotype they expected.

How then to increase intensity at an encampment without the crutches of 'yelling' 'raising voices' or whatever you want to call it? I offer the following as ways to do so.
1 - Give time limits and remind people of them. I'm not talking silly limits like 10 second showers, but times to get out the door, make sure they're organized and on their way. If you want to increase stress on cadet NCOs in an appropriate way I'll talk a bit more about that later.

2 - Grade/evaluate people. If someone knows their performance is being evaluated and graded it can add some level of stress. Now since we haven't set a national standard by which you could "fail" encampment the metrics have to be appropriate. Feedback can actually be beneficial for students if it's gone over with them, but a constant hum of inspectors just watching and evaluating all aspects can be stress inducing. If you don't think so...I invite you to watch a USAF unit effectiveness inspection or nuclear surety inspection sometime. Zero yelling...lots of stress.

3 - Question someone. "Cadet X, why did you do X?" In a normal speaking tone. Continue to press, find the limits of what considerations they are taking. Press on 2nd and 3rd order effects.

How to apply this even further? Traditionally cadre have been the ones leading and students largely just have to shut up and execute. This is often modeled on the basic training format but I propose using the Field Training or OTS format instead.

Namely the students be more responsible for leading students (which hits another key trait) and the cadre act as instructors. In this model the Flight Sergeants would act primarily as instructors/questioners of any student NCOs. The student NCOs would be the ones marching flights from point A to B, making sure the flight stays on time (at least in their minds, though to the extent it's permissible building in a couple minutes slush in the schedule for students to fail at something can be beneficial), ensuring their fellow students are ready for inspection, etc. The cadet officer cadre would act primarily as evaluators and picking which student NCOs are going to be assigned to what tasks next and that training objectives are being met. Additionally they are responsible for making sure the flight sergeant doesn't go over the line. The Senior Members with the flight are the ultimate backstop to ensure there is not total mission failure (keeping in contact with senior staff, ensuring CPP is followed, etc) and act as mentors to the cadet officer cadre primarily.

This would also add the intensity for the students that they are suddenly not in receive mode. They are actively responsible not only for themselves but for the success of others and their flight.

Just some food for thought.
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Spam
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Posts: 1,071
Unit: GA-001

« Reply #29 on: June 21, 2018, 06:01:22 PM »

I think that every proposal to "add intensity" needs to go through a review process including an appropriate level of senior officer oversight.


I appreciate your mention of time limits/time management, which I think is a good idea, IF very carefully set out and monitored. The 10 second showers and so forth are a symptom of runaway intensity addiction in our junior leadership, as are the old trope of successive layers of command subtracting 15 minutes from their superiors time on target, to the point where junior NCOs are waking people up at oh dark thirty to sit and wait - thus "proving" their ability as leaders. ("Ooo-rah, we're first out to PT/first finished at DFACS/etc.").


You think that's not a big thing, at age 17, or 24. Its not a big thing if you've mastered the art of the "hack" and can hack life.  Then, later in life, you think differently after you've had to deal with multiple 13 year olds who through lack of hygiene time haven't had a shower in 3 days and have developed open bleeding sores on their thighs, or who finally present at sick call on THU AM with painfully impacted bowels due to not having had personal time to take a crap in days (while eating MREs!), or who had an unusual/unexpected period due to induced stress and were too intimidated by "intense" cadet leadership to ask for help until they were overwhelmed.


Hey, if these are outside your experiences, be thankful. If that sort of thing is present in an active duty situation with adults, that's one thing (still unsat) but with our youngest volunteers, that's abuse that we can and must avoid. The old approach of molding 13 and 15 year olds using the ancient draftee "break them all the way down first, to remake them" mold is not just gone with the old CAP - it is gone from the active military, who are no longer involuntary draftees, but rather motivated volunteer professionals.


Our unpaid, youngest volunteers deserve a balanced, carefully monitored experience filled with Eustress - not Distress. Take a couple moments and look those terms up...


R/s
Spam


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etodd
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,165

« Reply #30 on: June 21, 2018, 08:33:26 PM »

What percentage of Cadets "desire" the military aspects of CAP, because they are planning on military careers ... vs ... those Cadets who "tolerate" the military aspects of CAP on drill night so they can enjoy aerospace and other things on the other days? My guess is the percentage of the former is rather small(?)
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Eclipse
Too Much Free Time Award

Posts: 28,614

« Reply #31 on: June 21, 2018, 10:02:38 PM »

The majority are interested and invested in the military aspects, not necessarily because of
career aspirations, however the fallacy is that "military discipline = yelling".

It doesn't.

Yelling is intended, generally, for one purpose - intimidation.  If you have to intimidate people
into following you, you're no much of a leader, and won't last long in CAP.

That also doesn't mean that every moment in uniform is a pizza party, and that there aren't
aspects that are less "fun" then others, even downright unpleasant at times, but a good leader,
military or otherwise, is able to characterize the end goals and purpose behind activities, actions,
and even disciple, so that intimidation isn't necessary, or at the least the intimidation comes
from the real threat of being denied access to a desired opportunity, vs. some hollow threat
that comes from yelling.
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xray328
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 568

« Reply #32 on: June 22, 2018, 03:17:41 PM »

Yet this still happens...

Removed to protect the innocent.  Video was of cadets screaming at other cadets.

Fast forward to :50

Not only did it happen, it was filmed and uploaded by a senior member who apparently thought nothing of it.
« Last Edit: June 22, 2018, 04:42:12 PM by xray328 » Logged
ZigZag911
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,981

« Reply #33 on: June 23, 2018, 09:13:19 PM »

In the immortal words of Michael Corleone in The Godfather, "It isn't personal, it's strictly business."

When the instructor allows emotion to enter into it, yelling or demeaning the under-performing cadet, it is no longer teaching, it is approaching, at the very least, a boundary violation in the area of emotional abuse.

It is not only prohibited, it is also counter-productive. Fear is not an effective teaching tool.

 As Ned said, encampment needs to be highly structured ("regimented", to use his term) fostering self-discipline and teamwork among the student cadets, as well as the staff -- senior and cadet.

In my experience -- and I helped run wing encampments for about 10 years -- there are two keys:

1) the attitude of the encampment commander and key leaders

2) thorough advance training for staff, particularly those working directly with the cadet in-flight students.

I'd like to see some sort of visitation/evaluation of encampments by CAP National HQ and CAP-USAF. Right now
one problem is a lack of accountability, largely based on supposed "traditions", some created as recently as 2015!

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abdsp51
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« Reply #34 on: June 24, 2018, 01:31:03 PM »

In the immortal words of Michael Corleone in The Godfather, "It isn't personal, it's strictly business."

When the instructor allows emotion to enter into it, yelling or demeaning the under-performing cadet, it is no longer teaching, it is approaching, at the very least, a boundary violation in the area of emotional abuse.

It is not only prohibited, it is also counter-productive. Fear is not an effective teaching tool.

 As Ned said, encampment needs to be highly structured ("regimented", to use his term) fostering self-discipline and teamwork among the student cadets, as well as the staff -- senior and cadet.

In my experience -- and I helped run wing encampments for about 10 years -- there are two keys:

1) the attitude of the encampment commander and key leaders

2) thorough advance training for staff, particularly those working directly with the cadet in-flight students.

I'd like to see some sort of visitation/evaluation of encampments by CAP National HQ and CAP-USAF. Right now
one problem is a lack of accountability, largely based on supposed "traditions", some created as recently as 2015!

Agree.  Also you do know that CAP-USAF does have someone look over things right?  The last encampment I was at had  USAF Maj there.
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Ned
Resident Philosopher

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« Reply #35 on: June 24, 2018, 06:04:08 PM »

Also you do know that CAP-USAF does have someone look over things right?  The last encampment I was at had  USAF Maj there.

Not as much as we would like.  There are no man days allocated for CAP RAP officers to visit encampments these days.  While it is possible for a liaison region to make that happen occasionally, or even a points only reservist to visit, our AF colleagues no longer require AF evaluation or even a presence at encampments.  It is primarily a resourcing issue.

Perhaps someday that may change.  More AF presence at encampment is always welcome.

Ned Lee
(Having a great time at COS)
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abdsp51
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« Reply #36 on: June 24, 2018, 06:23:40 PM »

Also you do know that CAP-USAF does have someone look over things right?  The last encampment I was at had  USAF Maj there.

Not as much as we would like.  There are no man days allocated for CAP RAP officers to visit encampments these days.  While it is possible for a liaison region to make that happen occasionally, or even a points only reservist to visit, our AF colleagues no longer require AF evaluation or even a presence at encampments.  It is primarily a resourcing issue.

Perhaps someday that may change.  More AF presence at encampment is always welcome.

Ned Lee
(Having a great time at COS)

Maybe something can be coordinated with CAP-USAF to allow SM's who are also USAF members to potentially dual hat?  Give them a checklist to run and see where it goes?  I know that encampment is one thing that we can go on permissive TDY status for. 
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TheSkyHornet
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« Reply #37 on: June 25, 2018, 10:57:29 AM »

I think there is an element of "yelling" at Encampment that is reasonable and justified in being used as a training tool. I'm talking about an outdoor command voice, not screaming and scratching vocals. Nobody should be, what we called, "ballistic."

A lot of people forget that intensity can be manipulated with the objective. Give an end state and a deadline. I just got off of a week of Encampment this past Saturday. You tell a bunch of students to take off their blouses, neatly fold them, and make the letter of their respective training flight in an orderly shape on the grass outside of the chow hall, and you give them 60 seconds to do it, I guarantee you the stress and intensity goes up. A simple "Let's go, Foxtrot Flight. You're wasting time" will go a long way in keeping them in the hustle of 'boot camp.'

It's absolutely crucial, under every circumstance though, to respect the fact that our opinions of what should be do not always coincide with the regulations and restrictions we operate under. I personally don't think it's unreasonable to say "You took too long. Get on your face and start pushing, all of you. Now get up and fix it." But that's something our regulations specifically prohibit. Therefore, you don't ever do it.

It's one thing to complain about why we don't like something. It's another thing to say "Well, I'm doing it anyway" or "this is how I think it should be done so this is how I intend to do it." I'm willing to counsel someone who does that one time. The next time, I want you off my team...even if I agree with your methodology. It's out of compliance and wrong.
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RiChArD7032
Recruit

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« Reply #38 on: July 01, 2018, 09:50:17 PM »

This has been very interesting to read.  For me, I am a former cadet from Utah Wing in the 90's and recently rejoined CAP in January.  I'm also an active duty SNCO in the AF.  And I just returned home today from participating as a TAC Officer at my Wing's encampment. 

All week I've been "reliving" and trying to remember how things were when I attended my first encampment in 1991.  Old jodies would come back to me as I watched the cadets march.  I remembered old pictures of my flight posing with our guidon and being excited about being there with my peers.  I honestly don't remember being "yelled at" hardly as much as I witnessed this past week with several Squadrons I observed.  I was actually taken back as I watched the intensity level beginning on day zero and lasting well thru day 4. 

I will say, my BMT experience was not as intense.  I say this because it was a different kind of intensity for me.  Sure there was yelling and the unconfirmed threat of bodily harm, but my MTI was a master of being intense without the constant use of yelling.  His pressence was commanding and when he spoke, everyone listened.  He had a voice that boomed and demanded respect.  When we heard the tap of his shoes as he walked, we knew to lock it up and be ready for anything. How can we have that kind of pressence from each Cadre member at encampment? 

Everyone has had some great points for both sides of the issue.  Another post mentioned reading CAPP 60-15 and it remined me that we need to find a balance.  "Problems can arise when there is a mismatch between the intensity level and the training to be accomplished.  Too high an intensity level results in unnecessary stress and means the cadets cannot learn." When do you "yell" and when do you "mentor" the flight member?  Is there an expectation that the cadet knows how to drill and wear their uniform and thus, yelling is ok because they should already know it?  What purpose does yelling at the cadet to walk on a certain side of a line duct taped in the middle of the bay?  Why did I have to fold my underwear at BMT to a very specific size?  It was to teach a keen skill of attention to detail in myself and my fellow peers.  We are required to learn how to work as a team and that requires a fair amount of stress.  Stress that in my opinion doesn't need to be in the form of yelling or the level of intensity I witness throughout the week.  Can encampment be just as successful without the excessive intensity or do encampments that don't yell really produce "weak" cadets?

Well, just some things that came to mind as I read this thread.  I'm tired...7 days of less than 5 hours sleep has caught up with me and I must catch up on that missed sleep.   


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TheSkyHornet
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« Reply #39 on: July 02, 2018, 10:17:48 AM »

This has been very interesting to read.  For me, I am a former cadet from Utah Wing in the 90's and recently rejoined CAP in January.  I'm also an active duty SNCO in the AF.  And I just returned home today from participating as a TAC Officer at my Wing's encampment. 

All week I've been "reliving" and trying to remember how things were when I attended my first encampment in 1991.  Old jodies would come back to me as I watched the cadets march.  I remembered old pictures of my flight posing with our guidon and being excited about being there with my peers.  I honestly don't remember being "yelled at" hardly as much as I witnessed this past week with several Squadrons I observed.  I was actually taken back as I watched the intensity level beginning on day zero and lasting well thru day 4. 

I will say, my BMT experience was not as intense.  I say this because it was a different kind of intensity for me.  Sure there was yelling and the unconfirmed threat of bodily harm, but my MTI was a master of being intense without the constant use of yelling.  His pressence was commanding and when he spoke, everyone listened.  He had a voice that boomed and demanded respect.  When we heard the tap of his shoes as he walked, we knew to lock it up and be ready for anything. How can we have that kind of pressence from each Cadre member at encampment? 

Everyone has had some great points for both sides of the issue.  Another post mentioned reading CAPP 60-15 and it remined me that we need to find a balance.  "Problems can arise when there is a mismatch between the intensity level and the training to be accomplished.  Too high an intensity level results in unnecessary stress and means the cadets cannot learn." When do you "yell" and when do you "mentor" the flight member?  Is there an expectation that the cadet knows how to drill and wear their uniform and thus, yelling is ok because they should already know it?  What purpose does yelling at the cadet to walk on a certain side of a line duct taped in the middle of the bay?  Why did I have to fold my underwear at BMT to a very specific size?  It was to teach a keen skill of attention to detail in myself and my fellow peers.  We are required to learn how to work as a team and that requires a fair amount of stress.  Stress that in my opinion doesn't need to be in the form of yelling or the level of intensity I witness throughout the week.  Can encampment be just as successful without the excessive intensity or do encampments that don't yell really produce "weak" cadets?

Well, just some things that came to mind as I read this thread.  I'm tired...7 days of less than 5 hours sleep has caught up with me and I must catch up on that missed sleep.

To those who doubted me on this....there you have it. As I said, I was averaging about 4 hours a night.

Anyway, there is a point to be made about this post. I think it rings true that intensity is not always yelling. Yelling has its time and place, but even under that circumstance, you have to ask: What is the training purpose of this exercise?

Everything we did over my week at Encampment was encompassed by that question. If your cadets fail to identify the purpose of their method of instruction, then it's no longer training; it's nonstandard operating procedure.
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