One Shepherd Leadership Institute

Description of Courses

One Shepherd’s Mission: “To provide the highest caliber of leadership education through experiential decision-making within a fully immersive learning environment.”

One Shepherd’s Warrior Leader Program (WLP) curriculum was established in 1995 and has been continuously refined ever since. The WLP curriculum leverages:

  • Expeditionary Learning in which Warriors are removed from a traditional classroom and immersed into an authentic operational environment.
  • Experiential Learning in which Warriors acquire mastery of leadership skill through authentic activity and self-reflection on performance.
  • Problem-Based Learning in which Warriors are prompted to solve ill-structured, ill-defined, yet authentic tactical tasks that have no single “correct” answer.

The WLP is designed as a six-semester curriculum, with each semester spanning seven days for a total of 42 days of training. Warriors live in a field environment for the duration of each week while conducting daytime and nighttime patrols. Tented quarters, meals, blank ammunition, and all mission essential gear are provided (AR15, MILES 2000, radios, and optics).

One Shepherd recommends a progression through the WLP with the Warrior Basic Course being the entry point into the WLP. Yet, after completing this entry course, each Warrior may tailor their pathway through the curriculum as it best fits their budget and schedule.

Warrior Leader Program Curriculum Pathway Options

Warrior Basic Course

Entry into the Warrior Leader Program!

The Warrior Basic Course (WBC) is offered twice per year, at the beginning of each semester. Participation in the WBC is the prerequisite for attendance to all other courses within the WLP.

Warriors are introduced to battlefield operating systems unique to the infantry platoon, including:

  • AR15 Rifle or Carbine
  • Multiple Integrated Laser Engagement System (MILES) 2000
  • PRC-Series Military Radio
  • TA-1/PT Field Phone & WD-1 Wire
  • D-300 Night Vision Devices

The two-day WBC covers the fundamentals of “shoot, move, and communicate.” This involves movement formations, hand signals, and immediate action battle drills. The WBC culminates with a nighttime combat patrol and a daytime force-on-force application lane.

Participating members who complete the WBC are awarded the One Shepherd Regiment shoulder patch at the end of this two-day course. They become a member of our community.

Land Navigation Course

Finding direction is the most perishable skill.

The Land Navigation Course (LNC) is offered once per year, alternating between fall and spring semesters.

Warriors are introduced to the basics of:

  • Topographical Map Reading
  • Magnetic, Lensatic 3H Tritium Compass
  • Pace Count
  • Dead Reckoning Method
  • Terrain Association Method

The two-day LNC culminates with daytime and nighttime navigation lanes that are typically accomplished in warrior pairs. Walking over uneven terrain with load bearing equipment is required for this course.

The LNC is one of four course requirements on the warrior track – WBC + LNC + WAC + FTX. The LNC is intended as a prerequisite to beginning the leadership track.

Warrior Advanced Course

Field craft is the foundation of the Warrior.

The Warrior Advanced Course (WAC) is offered once per year, alternating between fall and spring semesters.

Warriors are introduced to the basics of field craft:

  • Warrior Resiliency Techniques
  • Emergency Medical Self-Aid & Buddy-Aid
  • Water Purification
  • Construction of Basha Shelter
  • Camouflage of Self & Position
  • Pointman Tactics, Techniques & Procedures
  • Radio Theory of the PRC-series Radio & TA-series Field Phone.

The two-day WAC culminates with a daytime lane of SABA and medical evacuation. Walking over uneven terrain with load bearing equipment is required for this course.

The WAC is one of four course requirements on the warrior track – WBC + LNC + WAC + FTX. The WAC is intended as a prerequisite to beginning the leadership track.

Light Leaders Course

Leadership and management are distinct, yet inextricably entwined skills.

The Light Leaders Course (LLC) is offered once every third semester, in the spring or fall.

Warrior-Leaders are introduced to procedural models of leadership. This includes:

  • Troop Leading Process (TLP/BAMCIS)
  • Pre-Combat Inspections (PCI)
  • Combat Orders (WARNO, OPORD, FRAGO)
  • Decision-Making Models (OODA, RPD, EDM)
  • After Action Review (AAR)

The two-day LLC culminates with leading and vocally commanding Warriors in a nighttime combat patrol and daytime force-on-force lanes.

The LLC is a requirement for the leader track curriculum. Participation in the LLC is typically reserved for those Warrior-Leaders already tabbed One Warrior.

Mission Command Course

No plan survives the first shot.

The Mission Command Course (MCC) is offered once every third semester, in the spring or fall.

Warrior-Leaders are introduced to the philosophy and principles of maneuver warfare, plus effects-based operations. Addressed in the MCC are:

  • Auftragstaktik
  • Command Presence
  • Commander Guidance
  • Mission Command

The two-day MCC culminates with a turn-based tabletop wargame that focuses on operational-level decision-making.

The MCC is a requirement for the leader track curriculum. Participation in the MCC is typically reserved for those Warrior-Leaders already tabbed One Warrior.

Leader Reflection Course

When casting light on another's pathway, the leader inevitably cast light on his own path.

The Leader Reflection Course (LRC) is offered once every third semester, in the spring or fall.

Warrior-Leaders are introduced to purposely reflective leadership and resiliency. The LRC is sometimes called “a gentleman’s course” and includes:

  • Personality Impact on Group Dynamics
  • Leadership Styles
  • Leadership Ethics
  • Mentoring Resiliency in Warrior-Scholars

The two-day Leader Reflection Course culminates with a von recht, a German term meaning literally “from law” or “from a legal right,” but in practice a camping retreat of reflection.

The LRC is a requirement for the leader track curriculum. Participation in the LRC is typically reserved for those Warrior-Leaders already tabbed One Warrior.

Situational Training Exercises (STX)

Seminars in the tactical proficiency of dismounted patrolling.

The Situational Training Exercise (STX Seminar) is offered twice per year, each spring and fall semester. All six of the two-day STX Seminars cover an offensive tactic, defensive tactic, and enabling tactic that are conducted at the squad and/or platoon level. There are six distinct STX Seminars forming the core of the three-year Warrior Leader Program.

STX Seminar I

Offense: Movement to Contact
Defense: Mobile Defense
Enabling: Passage of Lines

STX Seminar II

Offense: Deliberate Attack
Defense: Area Defense
Enabling: Screen Operations

STX Seminar III

Offense: Pursuit & Exploitation
Defense: Retrograde Delay
Enabling: Guard Operations

STX Seminar IV

Offense: Counterattack
Defense: Retrograde Withdrawal
Enabling: Cover Operations

STX Seminar V

Offense: Special Purpose Attack – Ambush
Defense: Objective Rally Point
Enabling: Route Reconnaissance

STX Seminar VI

Offense: Special Purpose Attack – Raid
Defense: Patrol Base Operations
Enabling: Area/Point Reconnaissance

Warriors who attend all six of the STX Seminars plus six FTX Simulations are awarded the Lightfighter scroll at the bottom of the One Shepherd regimental patch. This scroll denotes an experienced competency in small unit dismounted patrolling tactics.

Field Training Exercises (FTX)

The pinnacle of leadership education is an exploratory experience without teachers.

The Field Training Exercise (FTX Simulation) is offered twice per year, at the end of the spring and fall semesters. The three-day FTX Simulation is the culminating event of each semester, the opportunity for authentic application of all learning within the Warrior Leader Program!

The FTX Simulation is mentally challenging, physically exhausting, and absolutely exciting. The simulation runs non-stop for 48-hours over a three-day period. It is during this period that the warriors and warrior-leaders take over the training and assume command of their respective teams. This is war gaming at the highest fidelity of live force-on-force engagement in the time-honored tradition of kriegspiele.

All aspects of small unit tactics, warrior skills, and leadership competencies come into play. A robust AAR takes place immediately after the completion of the FTX Simulation. Additionally, feedback assessment is offered in the form of “murder boards” for all participants serving in a leadership position.

The FTX Simulation is a requirement for both the warrior and leader track within the Warrior Leader Program education.