Last Updated: June 1st, 2017By

FORT KNOX, Ky.—Advance Camp 1st Regiment went out to George Blair Range for weapon qualification.

Qualification is an exercise in which the cadets are given 40 rounds of ammunition, then presented 40 targets. Cadets have to hit a minimum of 23 of the 40 targets in order to pass the qualification exercise, and graduate from Advance Camp. This standard of 23/40 is a standard for all Soldiers in the Army.

Cadet Lucas Lea of Truman State University, hometown Kansas City, Mo., takes a shot at a pop-up target at George Blair Range. May 31 at Fort Knox, Ky. (Photo by Amber Vincent)

“It’s very important that these future leaders be able to pass qualification since it is the most basic skill to have as a Soldier. It’s important that they take it seriously and learn as much as they can,” said 1LT Patrick Brehany, 3rd Cavalry Regiment 4th Squadron (“Long Knife”) from Fort Hood, Texas, Officer In Charge of George Blair Range.

“At my university, we do some basic weapons familiarization. But the training we’re getting out here at Fort Knox is far more substantial than anything I would ever see from my university,” said Cadet Alexander Heeschen, University of Vermont, hometown Gettysburg, Pa.

This year, weapons qualification has been made a requirement in order to graduate from Advance Camp. “It ups the stakes and makes it more serious,” said Heeschen.