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May 27, 2011  

Training

Wisconsin Army Guard’s 3rd, 426th

to teach 10-day MRT Course at McCoy

The 3rd, 426th Regiment (Training Assistance) organization at Fort McCoy will become the third Army organization to teach the Master Resiliency Trainer (MRT) course.

Lt. Col. Andrew Ratzlaff, battalion commander for the 3rd, 426th, said the National Guard Bureau approved the organization becoming the National Guard Resilience University. The first-10 day MRT course will be instructed July 18-29 at the Wisconsin Military Academy (WMA) at Fort McCoy.

Two five-day Resilience Training Assistant (RTA) Courses will be offered at the WMA from June 6-10 and June 13-17.

Fort McCoy joins the University of Pennsylvania and Victory University at Fort Jackson, S.C., as the only organizations teaching the MRT course, Ratzlaff said.

The National Guard Bureau has approved the 3rd, 426th’s site to certify MRTs and it will allow more National Guard Soldiers to get the training. The MRT courses at Fort McCoy will be open to everyone in the Department of the Army community, including civilians.

Maj. Sylvia Lopez of the 3rd, 426th Regiment is the most-trained senior MRT in the Wisconsin National Guard, and one of two in the Army National Guard. She will serve as a facilitator, and, eventually, trainer.

Lopez was one of three lead trainers in a five-day Guardwide RTA workshop in San Diego in late April. The purpose of the training was to certify RTAs from across the 54 U.S. states and territories in a central forum, she said.

“MRTs work together in a collaborative effort to help all Soldiers get this training,” Lopez said. “MRTs are very passionate. It’s a good program and we will work together. It isn’t a one-person operation.”

Each state will have a number of slots for each course held at Fort McCoy.

The personnel who help instruct the course and attend the course training will help spread resilience training back to personnel in their home states. People who take the RTA courses can present the training in short blocks of instruction, Lopez said.

Military personnel who take the 10-day course will receive the skill identifier 8R as MRT and can present the entire class in accordance with their commander’s guidance.

Ratzlaff said the training is important because it gives Soldiers a path to evaluate their behavior in a stressful situation.

“It gives you a chance to recognize when you’ve reached an iceberg and are going down,” he said. “You realize that some situations are a problem for you.”

Lopez said resilience training gives Soldiers a chance to develop a proactive approach to their problems. Instead of “spiraling down” and then having to come back up, people with the training can identify strategies to keep their morale high and continue performing their duties.

“Resilience training allows people to handle adversity and take advantage of opportunities that may come,” she said. “It helps you discover what sets you off, and you can have better reactions to a situation. Everyone is resilient.”

Resilience training also will be available for Family members, Ratzlaff said. The training will give them the tools they need to deal with military life as well as deployment and redeployment situations.

The MRT Course will be held at McCoy on approximately a monthly basis, depending on funding, he said.

Accommodations for students at the WMA are much less expensive than they are at the other locations, Lopez said.

In the future, Ratzlaff said the MRT Course from the 3rd, 426th also may be delivered by mobile training teams.

Ratzlaff said people can apply to attend the courses through their chain of command/administrative staff or for Army military personnel through the Army Training Requirements and Resources System.

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