Change is happening at Recruit Training Command (RTC). Today's recruits, born into the millennial generation, are quickly adapting to this new implementation. Change is in their hands... literally.
Squared away recruits fill the berthings of two divisions of 70 Recruits each involved in the E-Sailor initiative. They grasp their tablets tightly in their left hands as they form a height line prior to traveling to and from the cafeteria, or chow hall within their building, or "ship" as they refer to it in boot camp.
Both divisions are currently using new electronic tablets in pre-piloting stages to determine how effectively the device's use integrates into the training environment. Both divisions will help RTC gauge the functionality, usability and durability of the devices.
"I think it's an awesome idea." said Seaman Recruit Lyanna Rodriguez, a recruit in one of the two pre-pilot divisions. "I would never imagine that we would have tablets at boot camp. I'm used to always carrying around my phone so with a tablet it's almost like second nature to me."
For these recruits, interfacing with this newly implemented technology is a daily routine. "The Bluejacket's Manual" and "Recruit Training Guide" are preprogramed into the tablets, as well as other training videos, text, document files, diagrams, and charts.
"We are an increasingly technologically-centric Navy and I think it's the job of RTC to not only respond to the needs of the Navy but also to perceive those needs." said Capt. Doug Pfeifle, RTC commanding officer. "The goal is to try and have a tablet in the hands of every recruit here at boot camp in fiscal year 2017."
Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy Mike Stevens handed out the initial batch of tablets in April and stated that RTC is the ideal location to launch eSailor because of its exclusive role in training every enlisted Sailor in the United States Navy.
"Our new Sailors and the professional staff of RTC will leverage this technology for training." said Stevens.
These plankowner, tablet-recruits are already joining the ranks in the fleet.
Reprinted from the U.S. Navy’s All Hands publication. For video, please go to: http://www.navy.mil/ah_online/ftrStory.asp?issue=3&id=87331