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      Sgt. Reva Catholic
      50th PAD


      Photo by Sgt. Reva Catholic; Sgt. 1st Class Rashawn Brown, a telecommunications operations chief assigned to 3rd Infantry Division, prepares to engage his target in the standing supported position as part of the Army’s new M16 and M4 carbine marksmanship qualification March 11 on Fort Stewart.

      Soldiers take aim at new marksman qualification course 

      Soldiers assigned to Headquarters and Headquarters Battalion, 3rd Infantry Division, conducted the Army’s new marksmanship qualification during their scheduled M-4 range week March 9-12 at Fort Stewart.

      HHBN’s Soldiers are part of the beginning phasing in stages of the new qualifications range, according to 1st Lt. Shawn Sims, a signal officer assigned to Signal Intelligence Sustainment Company, HHBN, 3rd ID.
      The new marksmanship qualification course has been designed to replace the Cold War-era marksmanship qualification course, requiring Soldiers to engage targets faster in a variety of firing positions that they may be required to take during an enemy engagement.

      “This new test is an actual measurement of Soldiers’ marksmanship skills and how they would apply it to the real world,” said Sgt. David Fernandez, a nodal network systems operator assigned to SIS Co., HHBN, 3rd ID.

      The new required firing positions include prone unsupported, prone supported, kneeling supported and standing supported.
      Staff Sgt. Aaron Terry, a multichannel transmission systems operator assigned to SIS Co., HHBN, 3rd ID, said Soldiers are now given instructions prior to engaging the targets, and then they must change magazines and positions on their own during a prescribed amount of time.

      “We had to ensure preliminary marksmanship instruction within the sections was completed, so that everybody was familiar with the new qualification standard,” Sims said. “We had to work with range control to get the new targets and make sure the barriers for the standing portion were taken care of.”
      Terry said his job as noncommissioned officer in charge of the range encompassed coordinating and executing the range with 16 qualification lanes and three zeroing lanes.

       “It is a little more involving and keeps you on your toes,” said Sgt. 1st Class Rashawn Brown, a telecommunications operations chief assigned to 3rd ID. “It’s going to take time for Soldiers to get used to it.”
      Sims said the Army won't officially move to the new standard until this fall and the old standard can still be administered until that time.

      “It’s easy if you apply your shot process, which falls back on applying what you learned during engagement skills trainer and primary marksmanship instruction,” Fernandez said. “The hardest thing is transitioning between the positions and reloading.”
      The PMI portion, and EST training will be significant when preparing to qualify for the new standard, Terry said.
      “Go into qualifying with an open mind and take PMI seriously, especially before going to the range,” said Terry. “Although it is a requirement, have fun with it and you’ll be successful.”
      Photo by Sgt. Reva Catholic


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