BCT and OSUT builds character, instills discipline and Army Values, improves physical conditioning, and teaches basic combat and occupational skills. All of these contribute in the development of your individual skills and knowledge, resulting in a Soldier capable of serving as a member of a team in your First Unit of Assignment.
BCT / OSUT / AIT are training courses that transform civilians into Soldiers. Over the course of a number of weeks you will develop the character, commitment and competence skills and knowledge to succeed as a Soldier.
BCT – 10 weeks
11B/C (Infantryman) OSUT – 13 weeks, 3 days
12B (Combat Engineer) OSUT – 14 weeks
19D (Cavalry Scout) OSUT – 16 weeks
19K (Armor Crewman) OSUT – 15 weeks
31B (Military Police Officer) OSUT – 19 weeks, 1 day
AIT – Varies by Military Occupational Specialty
4-2. The Training Company – Your Unit
Upon arrival to your training company, the drill sergeants and cadre will in-process you and assign you to a platoon, which is a group of 60 Soldiers and 3 drill sergeants. Your Drill Sergeants are a mix of highly qualified male and female NCOs with 5-10 years of experience in the Army.
The Company Commander (Captain) is in charge of the Company. The Commander establishes policy and has legal discipline authority over you and all assigned company personnel.
The Commander is assisted by the First Sergeant (1SG) who is the master trainer and supervises the drill sergeants and other Soldiers and Civilians assigned to the Company.
There are 10 - 12 drill sergeants assigned to the company. They are responsible for the training and testing you receive. You will also see a Supply Sergeant (could be a civilian) who is responsible for the linen, pillows, cleaning supplies and the work orders needed to maintain the Company.
The training NCO or Training Officer/Executive Officer (XO) is responsible for updating and maintaining training records and the coordination of each day’s training events.
The Army provides a safe living and learning environment for all Soldiers. When you arrive at your company you will notice security measures established to protect you and your battle buddy.
Alarms are placed on doors that separate male and female Soldiers. This is to ensure no unauthorized entry during lights out or sleeping hours. Do not prop doors open or allow unauthorized persons to enter your barracks bay or sleeping area.
Cameras are installed in common areas (hallways, stairwells, lobbies, etc.) to assist cadre with identifying any misconduct during all hours of the day and night.
The Army installed SHARP hotline telephones in the barracks to assist Soldiers in reporting incidents. These hotlines are located in common areas and have multiple lines to allow Soldiers to report incidents of abuse without the stigma associated with using the hotline.
Upon arrival to your Basic Combat Training location you will receive a briefing on SHARP and introduced to the individuals who are assigned as the Sexual Assault Response Coordinator (SARC) and the Victim Advocate (VA).
These are the NCOs and or civilians that will provide you with contact information to be used if violations are observed during your training.
Their names and contact information are posted throughout the barracks and company area.
Write their names and contact information in the area provided in the front of the Blue Book.
4-4. Drill sergeants
A drill sergeant is a symbol of excellence in initial entry training, is an expert in all warrior tasks and battle drills, lives the Army Values, exemplifies the Warrior Ethos, and most importantly is the epitome of the Army as a Profession. A drill sergeant wears the distinctive “campaign hat” or “bush hat” and is responsible for coaching, counseling, mentoring and transforming Soldiers like you from a civilian volunteer to a combat-ready Soldier. Like the distinctive headgear they wear, each drill sergeant proudly wears their drill sergeant badge on their uniform. Like most things in the Army, each element of the badge has a specific meaning.
It consists of 13 stars representing the original colonies. The torch, burning brightly in the center, symbolizes liberty. The snake is derived from the original "Don't Tread on Me" serpent, a symbol of American independence during the 18th century. Together with the torch and breastplate, it indicates readiness to defend. The breastplate is a symbol of strength. The green background is a vestment worn under the breastplate and called a Jupon, which represents the new Army. The snake grasps, with his tail and teeth, a scroll inscribed with the Army’s motto "This We'll Defend."
The heritage of the drill sergeant and NCO reaches back to the Revolutionary War and carries through to today’s Army. Drill sergeants provide inspiration, discipline and technical competence within unit formations.
Your drill sergeant is committed to helping you succeed!
I will assist each individual in their efforts to become a highly motivated, well disciplined, physically and mentally fit Soldier, capable of defeating any enemy on today’s modern battlefield.
I will instill pride in all I train, pride in Self, in the Army, and in Country.
I will insist that each Soldier meets and maintains the Army’s standards of military bearing and courtesy, consistent with the highest traditions of the U.S. Army.
I will lead by example, never requiring a Soldier to attempt any task I would not do myself.
But First, Last, and Always, I am an American Soldier, sworn to defend the Constitution of the United Sates against all enemies, both foreign and domestic.
I am a Drill Sergeant.