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LEDC Extreme Makeover

The Army Logistics Management College’s Logistics Executive Development Course is “under reconstruction.” A pilot of the transformed course—with a new name and a new purpose—will be conducted this summer.

The Logistics Executive Development Course (LEDC) offered by the Army Logistics Management College (ALMC) at Fort Lee, Virginia, has been educating logistics professionals for many years. Over the last 10 years, a number of LEDC graduates have competed for and been awarded the Army Command and General Staff College’s (CGSC’s) Major General James M. Wright Master Logistician Award. They, and many other LEDC graduates, are now the Army’s senior logisticians. To coincide with Army logistics transformation and continue its tradition of producing first-rate Army logisticians, ALMC is revising the LEDC education experience to meet the needs of leaders for the transformed Army.

LEDC Overview

Since 1970, LEDC has offered a thorough factory-to-foxhole overview for students who aspire to become military and civilian logistics managers in key positions within Army and Department of Defense logistics organizations. The course has built on each student’s logistics foundation acquired through functional courses and personal experience. It has exposed them to the interface between the Army in the field and the logistics structure that supports it. In addition, LEDC has traditionally constituted the first part of a cooperative master’s degree program with the Florida Institute of Technology.

Keeping Up With the Times

To align LEDC with the expeditionary mindset of the transforming Army, ALMC is revamping LEDC to educate select logisticians who will become the Army’s joint, multinational, and multifunctional logistics problem-solvers at the operational level of war. The goal is to develop agile, innovative logisticians who know how to think by dissecting a logistics challenge and developing workable solutions, rather than what to think. The revised course framework will provide students with critical problem-solving skills and abilities to surmount complex logistics challenges in peace and war. Graduates will be targeted for key positions within theater and expeditionary sustainment commands.

New Course Design

The revised course, the Theater Logistics Studies Program (TLOG), will be conducted in small-group seminars similar to those used by CGSC’s School of Advanced Military Studies. (The School of Advanced Military Studies uses the Socratic method of instruction. Students are given material to research, and they are expected to come to class prepared to conduct a professional discussion with the facilitator.)

Instruction will be hands-on; students will grapple with a theater-level campaign plan that begins with a theater-opening scenario in which they must work through planning for reception, staging, and onward movement. Case studies will be introduced to further challenge and expand the students’ minds in areas such as providing disaster relief, resourcing unit rotations, and setting up tracking/interrogator networks for cargo or unit tracking. Presentations by logistics leaders from the Army, the Department of Defense, and industry will enhance the learning process by touching on subjects such as distributed operations, contractors accompanying the force, Army pre-positioned stocks, civil support, reconstitution, theater distribution, supply chain management, outsourcing, and reverse logistics. Visits to Defense Distribution Center Susquehanna, Pennsylvania; BAE Systems at York, Pennsylvania; and a port of embarkation will complement the classroom time and provide students with a visual representation of the sustaining base that supports the armed forces in the field. Skill set applications will be hands-on and case study-based and cover such topics as analysis to support decisionmaking, change management, optimization, ArcGIS, Lean Six Sigma, metrics for applied logistics, and querying for data. [ArcGis is an integrated geographic information system (GIS) software produced by Environmental Systems Research Institute, Inc. (ERSI).] The diagram at right depicts the course framework.

The TLOG goal is to provide an unmatched logistics education that makes graduates highly sought-after assets (problem-solvers) for both the near and long term. They will be equipped to—

  • Participate in the peacetime planning process.
  • Coordinate expeditionary operations.
  • Manage modular deployment operations.
  • Plan theater and area logistics support.
  • Direct logistics operations.
  • Manage theater redeployment operations.

The 19-week TLOG pilot will begin on 6 August 2007 and include two small-group seminars. Senior captains with command experience and majors desir-ing to attend this pilot or future iterations of the course should contact their career managers at the Army Human Resources Command or contact the ALMC staff by email at ledc@lee.army.mil. Future adjustments to the course will be made as ALMC receives feedback from students. After serving in theater and expeditionary sustainment commands, graduates will be invited to return to ALMC to facilitate seminars in future courses.

Lieutenant Colonel Carey W. Radican is the Director of Instruction for the Logistics Executive Development Course at the Army Logistics Management College at Fort Lee, Virginia. He has a B.S. degree in marketing and management from Old Dominion University and an M.S. degree in computer systems management from the University of Maryland University College. He is a graduate of the Quartermaster Officer Basic Course, the Combined Logistics Officers Advanced Course, the Combined Arms and Services Staff School, the Logistics Executive Development Course, and the Army Command and General Staff Officer Course