On October 19, 2019 the Maryland Defense Force (MDDF) launched the first MDDF Career Captains Course at Camp Fretterd Military Reservation. In order to be eligible to attend the course, participants must have graduated from the MDDF Officer Basic Leadership Course or a U.S. Armed Forces officer training program. Course participants must also at minimum hold the rank of first lieutenant and have the approval of their commander.
“The course is designed to produce, develop and educate company grade officers in the Maryland Defense Force,” shared Maj. (MDDF) Mark Schroeder, Director of the MDDF Policy, Plans and Training Section. “Our company grade officers will be more competent, confident, adaptable and effective at solving problems as a result of this course. They will also be able to make rapid decisions and lead their state Soldiers in the full spectrum of operations,” he continued.
The Career Captains Course curriculum consists of nine classes which include Formats for Operational Orders, The Troop Leading Steps, The Estimate of the Situation and The Commander’s Estimate. Additional classes include Basic Staff Roles and Models, Coordinating Staff Roles, Special Staff and Personal Staff Roles, Developmental Counseling for Officers and the Conduct of a Military Briefing. The components of the course include classroom presentations and discussions, reading assignments, tests and a capstone project. The thirteen class participants completed the three month course on December 14, 2019 and graduation was held on January 11, 2019 at Camp Fretterd.
“The Maryland Defense Force continues to make significant strides to consistently improve our professionalism and effectiveness,” shared Brig. Gen. (MDDF) Lorenza Cooper, commanding general of the MDDF. “This new training program for company grade officers facilitates the mission readiness of our entire force and it adds value to the culture that we are constantly tweaking,” concluded Gen. (MDDF) Cooper.
The Maryland Defense Force (MDDF) is the State’s uniformed volunteer militia unit providing competent, supplementary, professional and technical support and soldiers to the Maryland Military Department and the State of Maryland as needed. Established in 1917, the MDDF consists of nearly 200 personnel who perform legal, engineering, finance, medical, chaplain, field support and ceremonial services for the State of Maryland.