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Once the dive site is established, other nations will likely want to send their personnel to NDSTC for the benefits it will offer for their diving programs.
And Company A is literally building a landmark; a brick and mortar engineer castle is being erected outside of the newest NDSTC physical training building.
While the NDSTC executive officer position is not a traditional junior officer development assignment, the potential for professional growth and JIIM exposure is limited only by the creativity of the diving officer.
Morning physical training consists of long runs, sprints, pull-ups, crunches, and push-ups designed to prepare candidates for the grueling workouts at NDSTC. The training also prepares candidates to excel in the diver physical fitness test, which consists of a 500-yard swim, a 1.5-mile run, and 2 minutes each of push-ups, crunches, and pull-ups.
Thanks to the training that the Army provides its dive candidates at Fort Leonard Wood and the NDSTC, the most qualified dive candidates pass the course and join the ranks of the Army dive field.
Working with divers before attending the school, and making sure the Sailors have the right temperament to complete the intense courses offered at NDSTC, helps more students graduate.
Sailors who attend NDSTC right after "A" school, along with some others, don't get a chance to be Mud Puppies.
Although the dive helmets used in contemporary Army missions are more advanced, all Army divers still learn the 100-year-old line-pull language during their courses at NDSTC in case of a communications failure.
When this article was written, Second Lieutenant Rice was an NDSTC student assigned to Company A, 169th Engineer Battalion, with a follow-on assignment as executive officer of the 511th Engineer Dive Detachment, Fort Eustis, Virginia.
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