USAG YONGSAN, South Korea- The career counselor for 41st Signal Battalion, 1st Signal Brigade, won Network Enterprise Technology Command Career Counselor of the Year on Feb 3.
Staff Sgt. Marcus E. Applewhite, NETCOM Career Counselor of the Year, competed against career counselors from three brigades and four signal commands to earn this title.
The process of NETCOM Career Counselor of the Year Competition begins with every brigade across the Army holding competitions. The winners then advance to the next level to compete against other winners and then each subsequent level selects a Career Counselor of the Year culminating in the Secretary of the Army Career Counselor of the Year competition held in Washington D.C. every year.
The candidates are given APFT, a written examination testing their knowledge on a wide variety of Regulatory and Policy Guidance pertaining to Retention and Human Resource Management and finally a board appearance to answer questions on a wide variety of topics.
"As the NETCOM Counselor of the Year, I think the overall important aspect of the job is not only taking care of Soldiers but also taking care of their families, ensuring that everyone collectively comes to an understanding of their career and getting them to make a well-informed decisions that not only benefit them but also benefit the Army as a whole," said Staff Sgt. Applewhite, Career Counselor, 41st Signal Battalion, 1st Signal Brigade. "It's about selfless service and sacrifice. It's also about always being available and being willing to assist people and try to find ways to solve problems as a forward thinker not only for yourself but also for the Soldiers, the Army and their family members as well."
"Career Counselors are responsible for ensuring Soldiers are counseled on professional career development as well as what the Army has to offer them if they choose to continue to serve," said Master Sgt. Tobey J. Whitney, Career Counselor, 1st Signal Brigade. "Career Counselors are also responsible for assisting Soldiers with reclassification, selecting a new duty assignment or simply reenlisting to continue serving. For those who decide they want to continue to serve but not on active duty, Career Counselors assist them with transitioning into the Army Reserve or Army National Guard."
As a Career Counselor, Staff Sgt. Applewhite has made a positive impact on the lives of every Soldier and family within 1st Signal Brigade. He has helped many Soldiers and their families change duty locations, acquire new skills or develop a plan of action for what they will do when they leave active duty.
"I think being named as a Career Counselor of the Year will place a positive light on the accomplishment of 1st SIG BDE, 311st Signal Command, and NETCOM itself." said Applewhite. "It would show that with hard work and dedication, you can get rewarded. I also feel that the title is going to be a greater sense of respect for the position, but as a person, I think that it means actually being able to help Soldiers and their families based on honest relationships."
Staff Sgt. Applewhite will represent 41st Signal Battalion, 1st Signal Brigade, 311st Signal Command and NETCOM at the Secretary of the Army Career Counselor of the Year competition in Washington D.C. in April.
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