May’s Hot Job Is … 31B Military Police

Now that On Your Guard is back online, we plan to pick one hot job each month throughout 2015 and tell you a bit about it. What defines each featured job as “hot”? One all-important benchmark: number of times people searched for it on the National Guard jobs board. So, without further ado, let’s get started.

 

For anyone thinking about starting down a law enforcement or security services career path, the 31B-Military Police military occupational specialty (MOS) in the Army National Guard may well be the best first step possible. In fact, 31B is, hands down, the most searched for MOS on the jobs board.

Just like their civilian counterparts, military police, or MPs, are called upon to preserve law and order. That means preventing and investigating crimes, providing surveillance, gathering evidence, patrolling the base, controlling crowds, and providing security to keep the peace. They also respond to natural disasters and other emergencies on the home front.

Besides its primary mission to serve local communities, the National Guard is also called upon to serve the Nation. Military police who are called to active duty in a war zone support battlefield operations. This could include working with intelligence officers to deal with prisoners of war and guarding senior officers. The Guard’s military police also have been called upon to train police forces in other countries like Iraq and Afghanistan.

Speaking of training, 31Bs attend 10 weeks of Basic Combat Training, followed by 8-10 weeks of Advanced Individual Training for their MOS. Advanced training includes both classroom and in-the-field instruction, and you’ll learn how to conduct police work, from crowd control techniques to how to restrain suspects and investigate crimes. The Guard also offers MPs additional opportunities for specialized training, such as an Interviewing and Interrogation Course and an Active Shooter Response Course.

The National Guard is a part-time commitment, which allows Soldiers to simultaneously serve and work toward a degree and/or pursue a civilian career. So, once you’re finished with Basic and Advanced training, you’ll have time to take advantage of the Guard’s outstanding education benefits, like tuition assistance and the Montgomery GI Bill. From there, you’ll be able to combine that education with the experience you’ll have as an MP to become an excellent law enforcement/security job candidate.

Plus, as SPC Stephen Strebinger explains in this video, MP training can give you a better feel for what area of civilian police work you want to pursue. He says he’s working toward a degree in criminal justice, and “the Guard’s paying for me to get there.”

For more information about how you can join the Guard’s military police, or learn more about any of its 200 career fields, visit the National Guard jobs board and contact a recruiter today.

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Guard Spotlight: Missouri

Homeland Response Force MPs Attend Chemical Defense Training

Specialist Sarah Mitchell, 1175th Military Police Company, identifies an unknown agent with M8 detection paper. Mitchell was one of more than 90 MPs from the unit who participated in specialized chemical defense training last month. (Photo by Staff Sgt. Amanda Barginear)

Specialist Sarah Mitchell, 1175th Military Police Company, identifies an unknown agent with M8 detection paper. Mitchell was one of more than 90 MPs from the unit who participated in specialized chemical defense training last month. (Photo by Staff Sgt. Amanda Barginear)

A group of Missouri Army National Guard military police underwent specialized chemical defense training for the first time ever last month at the chemical defense training facility that’s headquartered at Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri.

The pioneering effort is the brainchild of Staff Sgt. Amanda Barginear, along with Capt. Scott Wolf and 1st Sgt. Gabe Medina — all members of the 1175th Military Police Company based out of St. Clair and St. Louis.

More than 90 Soldiers from the unit’s Homeland Response Force (HRF) were selected to attend. That was a significant number, Medina says, and it heightened the exercise’s realistic, high-stress approach.

“Soldiers were given medical exams and initially took part in basic safety instruction sessions,” Medina said. Then “we were all fitted with protective equipment, including a service light-weight integrated suit and a protective mask.”

In each training scenario, the Soldiers were taught to detect and identify various chemical agents. Chemical alarms signaled the seriousness of the live agent training.

“Soldiers responded to the training techniques they received from the staff with confidence,” Medina said. After the live-agent identification session ended, Soldiers took a hands-on approach to decontaminating themselves and their equipment.

The day ended with a medical screening and a review of the eventful day, as they shared stories about their own experiences.

Capt. Michael Tompkins and other trainers said the experiment gave the MP Soldiers a “dynamic training opportunity” to gain confidence in themselves and the equipment used in a live nerve agent and toxic chemical environment.

“I hope it is not the last, and I look forward to any training opportunities that may take place in the future,” Tompkins said.

If you have an interest in gaining the training it takes to provide our Nation with top-notch emergency response, explore the National Guard jobs board and contact a recruiter today.

 

Original article by Staff Sgt. Amanda Barginear, 1175th Military Police Company, appeared last month in the news section of NationalGuard.mil.

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Guard Snapshot: Denver, Colorado

Volunteering in the kitchen makes for better cooks and a chance to help others.

SGT Robinson and 1LT Merrick prepare beef hamburger patties at the Denver Fisher House. Colorado Army National Guardsmen of the 193rd Military Police Battalion’s food service section prepare dinner for guests of the Fisher House once a month. The volunteer effort is part of an ongoing initiative for the Colorado Guardsmen to further develop their culinary skills while saving money and providing healthful meals.
SGT Robinson and 1LT Merrick prepare beef hamburger patties at the Denver Fisher House. Colorado Army National Guardsmen of the 193rd Military Police Battalion’s food service section prepare dinner for guests of the Fisher House once a month. The volunteer effort is part of an ongoing initiative for the Colorado Guardsmen to further develop their culinary skills while saving money and providing healthful meals.

For some, cooking is a means to an end, but for a select group of Colorado Army National Guard members, it’s a recipe of unqualified love.

“My joy is in watching others eat,” said Sergeant Joel Robinson as he began preparing the kitchen countertop at the Denver Fisher House.

Fisher Houses provide a home-away-from-home for military families, allowing them to remain close to their loved ones during hospitalization for an illness, disease, or injury. And just like home, guests normally prepare their own meals – but not at this Fisher House.

On the menu on a recent summer night: An all-American barbecue, complete with pulled-pork sandwiches, grilled burgers, corn on the cob, pork and beans, and all the fixings.

Sergeant Anthony Patterson began cooking his signature pulled pork at his house the day before arriving here.

“Pork shoulder. Bone in. Just a slow simmer before it falls off the bone,” he said of his process that began 10 hours prior.

“We only get a chance to cook at drill twice a month,” said Captain Mark Tommell while slicing a hearty, crimson tomato. “By doing this, we train more often and get the opportunity to volunteer.”

CPT Tommell, the 193rd Military Police Battalion adjutant, has led multiple efforts to improve both the morale and the cuisine of the Soldiers in his charge. As the commander for Company E, 2-135th General Support Aviation Battalion in 2011, CPT Tommell recruited Chef Ronald Lavallee from Johnson & Wales University in Denver to further develop his cooks’ culinary skills. Not only did the ongoing effort provide decadent and healthful cuisine for all the members of his battalion, it also lowered the cost of contract meals by nearly 70 percent.

In addition to cost savings, CPT Tommell said he encourages creativity when designing meals to be served on drill weekend.

“It’s very common for units to order ‘heat ‘n’ serve’ food or cook bland Army recipes. It’s safe to say that no commander, food service officer, or Army food service specialist would ever prepare an Army recipe at their house,” he said. “We’re continuing this training at Johnson & Wales, cooking at the Fisher House, and preparing creative menus that focus on a variety of cooking methods.”

“I like ’em thick,” said 1LT Mackenzie Merrick as she mashed 2 ½ pounds of ground beef into dense patties for grilling.

SGT Robinson prefers his burgers just a little thinner, and made his assigned portions so, adding green chilies to the raw meat for a savory effect on the grill.

CPT Tommell said his intent is for everyone in the 193rd’s food service section to help prepare a meal at the Fisher House at least twice. With the initiative in full motion, he hopes to engage enough volunteers in the unit to keep the program going after he moves on to his next assignment.

“Captain Tommell has a great passion for supporting our troops, along with rallying other Soldiers to help with this cause,” said Army Lieutenant Colonel Isaac Martinez, the 193rd’s battalion commander.  “I’m very proud I belong to a team of Colorado Guardsmen and veterans who want to give back to their own brethren.”

“Milk in the corn, makes it juicy and brings out the sweetness,” SGT Robinson said as he added a cup of creamy liquid to the pot of vegetables steaming on the stove.

“… Then debone and shred, add some barbecue sauce,” SGT Patterson said as he tore his main dish into bite-sized morsels for the dozen or so Fisher House guests. “Adding some of the original juices back in also helps keep the meat moist and retains its original flavor.”

For the completely self-funded initiative, the 193rd Soldiers also use their own time when it comes to preparing the guests’ meals.

“One of the missions of the Colorado National Guard is to serve our community and help our neighbors when they’re in need, and by cooking dinner for our fellow veterans and their family members while they’re staying at the Fisher House, we’re doing just that,” CPT Tommell said.

If you enjoy serving your community in its time of need, a career in the Army National Guard might be the right choice for you. Visit our jobs board and contact a recruiter today.

Original story and photo by 2LT Cheresa D. Theiral, Colorado National Guard Public Affairs, appeared in the news section of co.ng.mil/.

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