Col. Ryan Hanson, garrison commander, speaks to members of Fort Jackson's garrison during an all-hands meeting at the Post Theater, Jan. 20. (Photo by Robert Timmons)

Garrison highlights civilian programs at all-hands

By Robert Timmons, Fort Jackson Public Affairs

Fort Jackson garrison civilian employees heard about two initiatives aimed at improving their work environment during an all-hands meeting held Jan. 20 in the Post Theater.

The meeting led by Col. Ryan Hanson, garrison commander, highlighted garrison’s job shadowing and fitness programs. There was also a question-and-answer period to allow employees to have their concerns addressed face-to-face.

“When I look around the room, I see a lot of faces of people I have not been able to meet,” Hanson said to start the meeting. “So, when I asked Mark (Cox, deputy to the garrison commander) to do some of these all-hands meetings to get everyone together because I really think it is important that we get to talk and share our vision about what we’re trying to do in the garrison.”

“A voice that is not heard is a voice that is not considered,” Hanson added. “So please speak up. If you are sitting near someone that’s a little bit nervous, speak for them.”

Cox, the senior Department of the Army Civilian in the garrison, spoke about the job shadowing program.

The JSP is a 7-21 consecutive day voluntary engagement opportunity for employees to work alongside other employees within, or external, to his or her organization. This enables the participant to gain experience, to learn and develop within their current or future roles, and to help improve communication across organizations.

“I like this program because anyone can do it,” Cox said. “But you have to be a top performing employee. In other words, your supervisor has to recommend you. You can go shadow someone else in any garrison occupation that you want.”

For instance, the program would give a person who might want to work in the Directorate of Plans, Training, Mobilization and Security the necessary qualifications to work in that area. A call for shadowing opportunities is open until the end of the month, while applicants can apply between January and February. In March job applicants will be matched with available opportunities and then given an orientation into the program. The selected applicants will then perform their shadowing assignment from April to September.

“In perfect timing for New Year’s resolutions is the Garrison Fitness Program,” said Derrick Hall, deputy DPTMS director, introducing a briefing on the program.

In the GFP employees can spend three hours per week with no more than one hour a day and no more than 80 hours in a calendar year to participate in health and fitness activities/programs. To enter the program, the employee must agree in writing and certify they aren’t aware of any pre-existing medical conditions. The employee must also report to their work sites before and after their fitness period. Their timecards will be certified as being on admin leave.

“We want to track this as a command priority and a command investment so we are paying on the clock to engage in fitness activities,” Hall noted.

All participation in the GFP is approved by their directors and office chiefs.

All requests to join the program must be coordinated through the employee’s supervisor, Hall added.

Before the question-and-answer period opened, various directorates briefed the attendees on updates to their areas of expertise.