Last Updated: June 5th, 2024By

FORT KNOX, KY. – Cadets from 1st Regiment, Advanced Camp completed the Engagement Skills Trainer at Fort Knox, KY., June 5, 2024. The EST is a computer-based, indoor multilane small arms simulator that is used to simulate weapon training events. The Cadets learn the fundamentals of how to properly handle, load and shoot an M4 rifle.

Through training, EST provides Cadets with the knowledge and ability to form muscle memory with the different firing positions in regulation with the U.S. Army. The firing positions are composed of prone unsupported, prone supported, kneeling and standing. In order to pass the Individual Weapons Qualification, where Cadets shoot live ammunition at targets, they have to get an understanding behind the fundamentals before qualifying.

Although most Cadets were given information on weapons systems from their Reserve Officers’ Training Corps Program, for some, EST is their first time holding and firing a weapon.

“It definitely prepares you to qualify and become a better shooter.” said Cadet Kianna Grinkey from the University of Central Florida, “It seems like a safer way to train for the real deal.”

EST provides a safe training environment for Cadets without the stress of live ammunition. The weapons used for this training are designed to simulate live weapon functions in a controlled environment that allows the Cadets to get more time behind the weapon.

“Aligning the sights properly, breathing and trigger squeeze, all important parts of being precise with the weapon.”, said Sgt. 1st Class Grover Muriheid, a Platoon Training Officer from 1st Regiment, Advanced Camp highlights the importance of EST for the Cadets in training.

Murheid, also being a NCOIC for the Murray State ROTC program, explained how Cadets learn about the skills for IWQ in the classroom over a period of time and apply it to trainings such as EST. Murheid stated, “EST puts together all the skills that a Cadet has learned. All those skills include the fundamentals of rifle marksmanship.”

Later on, 1st Regiment Advanced Camp Cadets will take the knowledge that they have gained from EST and apply it to the weapons qualification event that requires each Cadet to hit a minimum 23 of 40 targets to pass.

About the Author: Jordan Chism