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Recruiting and Retention College Trains NCOs to Retain

By Sgt. Elizabeth White

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Staying Army isn’t always easy and Soldiers want to know every option available to them so that they can continue to do what they love.

Units across Ft. Stewart, Ga., sent their noncommissioned officers to a week-long Department of the Army retention training course to qualify as their unit’s retention NCO. 

“These retention NCOs are learning skills to help the Army keep its end strength,” said Sgt. 1st Class Timothy Donahue, an instructor/writer with the Recruiting and Retention College, Ft. Knox, Ky. “They’re going to take the skills they learn this week to help keep the Army ready, so we have enough Soldiers to deploy when we need to.”

Throughout the week, the class covered the Army’s goals for retention and the NCO’s role as an advisor to the commander, Donahue said.

The retention NCOs learn what is available to them to give Soldiers the best options for reenlistment and understand the regulation that guides those options.

“This class teaches us how to approach each Soldier in a way where we’re able to help with retaining them,” said Sgt. Natashia Darden, a retention NCO with Special Troops Battalion, 3rd Infantry Division Sustainment Brigade. “We’re giving the Army what it needs but we’re also addressing what the Soldier and their families need.”

“I like the class because it is not only helping me as a retention NCO, it helps with Soldiers’ military careers,” said Staff Sgt. Heeyoung Shin, a retention NCO with 2nd Armored Brigade Combat Team. “It is not only about having Soldiers sign a piece paper, it is about all the benefits that come with that decision.”

Understanding regulations and benefits available to Soldiers helps retention NCOs meet the needs of the Army, the Soldiers and their Families.