Army personnel other than grunts, medics now have an expert badge


Army personnel other than grunts and medics may find themselves conducting a similar training program in order to earn a badge similar to the Expert Infantry Badge and Expert Medic Badge- except catered exclusively to them.

The Expert Action Badge (EAB) would be very similar to the EIB and EMB currently offered to Infantry and Medics, according to TRADOC Command Sergeant Major David Davenport.

If approved, the EAB would likely become earnable by October of 2019.

“This is for the remainder of MOSs that don’t have a formal way of certifying competencies associated with their MOSs,” Davenport said Friday. “It will be a tool for commanders at O-6 level to validate their soldiers’ skill in warrior tests and battle drills.”

While it is hard to say how one can be an “expert of action” (the Combat Action Badge was designed to credit those non-infantry jobs that saw combat action), the new award concept comes at a time when deployments are drawing down- a possible harbinger to a return of the “garrison Army.”

The badge will test non-infantry soldiers on their warrior tasks and drills in a training event similar to EIB and EMB, albeit catered to their MOS.

Currently only a concept-piece, the EAB would look like the Combat Action Badge without a wreath, leaving behind only a bayonet and grenade.

The US Army is scheduled to run a pilot EAB program at Washington’s Joint Base Lewis-McChord to see just how feasible EAB training would be. Following approval, it could very well become the next badge featured on Army uniforms.

According to the Army Times, Sergeant Major of the Army Dan Dailey said the idea is to keep skills sharp in peacetime.

“I want to build individual skills,” he said. “The reason why we have an EIB and EFMB is so those two fields can maintain their skills during peacetime.”

In what seems to allude to a watered-down EIB course (or at least portions of it), the EAB course would likely contain basic soldiering skills, such as marksmanship and land navigation.

“It’s not exactly like the EIB, as that’ll be focused for the infantry, but the EAB is focused on the basic soldier skills,” he said. “It’s all tied to readiness.”

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  • Andy Wolf

    Andy Wolf is an Appalachian native who spent much of his youth and young adulthood overseas in search of combat, riches, and adventure- accruing decades of experience in military, corporate, first responder, journalistic and advisory roles. He resides in North Carolina's Blue Ridge Mountains with his K9 companion, Kiki.

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