Yeah I was disappointed as well that Ranger Coy wasn't stood to.
As an aside to that last year I was given a copy of the NZ 1st Ranger Coy Op Ord, the NZ Army Ranger Manual, and a collection of photo slides from a few of the Original Rangers from 89-90. I'm hoping to publish it all in 2013, the 150th anniversary of the Bush Rangers.
I'm glad that used the word Aumangea on the tab. I feel that way for a number of reasons, not the least of which is the fact it is an assessment course rather than a very tough leadership school(as I understand it).
As far as the part about if you're interested in Selection you might as well do the real thing I wouldn't disagree as it's not a pre-Selection or prep course, but it would appear to be quite useful for those so inclined as the pass rate for Selection is a good bit higher for those who have completed the course. However the sample sizes are still small, so it's best to hold fire on that claim but the initial results look quite promising.
Another key point is folks asking what skills you gain from the course.
While candidates get hit with a firehose of knowledge and access to a further wealth of knowledge there are no qualifications gained. NO qualifications.
The focus of the course is assessing and developing qualities. Developing an SF like mindset to try and bridge a part of the divide between RF and SF. And that's where I believe it's the best course I've taken and a lot of other guys who've taken it are keen to be a part of it again.
I think I know all the 2/1 fellas who've been thru. A very good bunch of officers, JNCOs, and baggies. Some were peers, some were under assessment but I really do like and respect them all. 2/1 did take the effort to send some of their very best I reckon. They stood out in a good way as a home unit.
I've heard a lot of folks saying stuff like "Jumanji course". And the response is usually "give it a crack then take the piss".
I think the hard part is high ops tempo, critical manning, promotion/banding courses, needs of the unit type stuff and we come in behind all that with a course that has seen average weight loss around the 11+KG mark on average.
So where do we fit in the mix?
Last course was WAY oversubscribed, which apparantly upset some in 2/1 not getting as many slots as they had hoped since they were strong early supporters. This one not so much(oversubscribed that is).
But the course has seen those coming out the back end getting promoted earlier and having a much better than average chance of success completing Selection.
It's also opened up a lot of doors to folks in our community I wouldn't have had the chance to meet or get much facetime with. Now they are mentors happy to share the knowledge they gained on an ongoing basis.
How often do guys get the opportunity to have access to an ex Unit RSM keen to share his knowledge? And many others of his calibre as well.
One thing I have picked up on(in my perception) is that while training and equipment have improved in this last decade+ of conflict, has the average mindset changed to match the evolving threat?
Out of every 10 riflemen, when given an individual effort activity, how many will actually approach their true and honest potential?
I have a LOT of respect for the RF in the RNZIR, but I don't think the number would be very high. 1,2,3 at most in my opinion, without being given the tools to improve those percentages. It's human nature and naturalbhuman "programming".
The psychological side of it has been a very eye opening experience for me.
It was easy for me to say I KNOW I could physically achieve more than my mind will typically allow me to do(out of perceived self preservation).
But it really had a lot more gravity when I did it.
So while I also wonder where we fit in as well at times, I know that when the vast majority of the guys who did the course advocate for it and are gagging to help out on it(if released) is the measure of it for me.
If guys who did the course were really bagging it I'd be worried.
Just my opinion and experience with it.