MARINE CORPS AIR STATION CHERRY POINT, N.C. --
Cherry Point’s Corporals Leadership Course took it’s Marines to Marine Corps Auxiliary Landing Field Bogue for a three-day field operations training exercise Nov. 3-5.
More than 30 students divided themselves into pairs and constructed their tents in preparation for their three-day stay in the poor weather.
“This is the first time all year we have brought the Corporal’s Leadership Course to Bogue,” said Staff Sgt. Carlos I. Castillo, staff noncommissioned officer in charge with Corporals Leadership Course.
Castillo said the first day of training while in the field was strictly basics.
“We go over things like basic rifle safety, hand and arm signals for patrolling, basic first aid and a few other things Marines will most likely use while in combat,” said Castillo.
The second day of training was used by the Marines as a practical application day using more realistic tactics.
“Throughout the day we will be moving the Marines from one zone of work to another,” said Castillo. “We will have one squad start patrols, and they might end on defensive positions.”
During the practical application the Marines faced simulated situations similar to ones they may have to face if deployed, to include roadside bombs, vehicle born improvised explosive devices and suicide bombers.
“The weather is going to make this training even more realistic for the Marines here during the next few days,” said Sgt. Julie H. Mezick, a Corporals Leadership Course instructor. “We have Marines teaching each other to build their leadership skills.”
The final day was the Marines’ evaluation to show the instructors what they learned during the last 48 hours of instruction.
“In the field one Marine’s decision can decide the fate of his entire squad or fire team,” said Castillo. “If we tell them they need to demonstrate how to apply a tourniquet and the members of the fire team can’t do it correctly, they will fail and could prevent the rest of their squad from passing as well.”
“We are going to make sure they feel a small amount of sleep deprivation to better help them realize that one little mistake by one person could be detrimental to all the Marines around them,” said Castillo. “There will be two Marines on fire watch at all times during the night.”
Mezick said the students quickly learned what could be helpful as well as deadly in a combat zone.
“It was really motivating, and the class really came together out there,” said Cpl. Rashaun X. James, a combat correspondent for Cherry Point. “Going through Corporals Leadership Course finally feels like I’ve earned the right to wear the rank of corporal.”