Journal of Military Transportation Management: Intern program thrives at MTMC

Intern program thrives at MTMC

Katherine J. Floyd

A little competition can be a good thing. A lot of competition is what you’ll find when applying for a spot in the Department of the Army Transportation Management Intern Program.

According to Ellen Savedge, the Civilian Proponency Officer, U.S. Army Transportation Corps, applicants for the popular program now reach as high as 200–with approximately 20 individuals being selected each year. She says the quality of candidates applying for the popular program has always been stellar, making selections quite competitive.

“These intern graduates bring fresh ideas into the work force,” said Col. Keith Morrow, MTMC Operations Center, Chief of Staff.

MTMC is a big benefactor of this valuable training program, on average receiving about half the graduates.

The MTMC Operations Center recently received 12 of tike current interns for three months of training prior to their first assignments.

Christine Dimitry, one of the interns providing support to MTMC’s Operations Center, was recruited by Savedge and her staff at a college job fair. She is excited about her first assignment with MTMC.

“I definitely think it’s my endless curiosity that got me here,” said Dimitry, who will later begin an 18-month assignment with the 835th Transportation Battalion in Okinawa, Japan.

Steve Lord, a former intern who completed the program in 1994, now serves as Chief of Global Distribution, Business Services Section, at the MTMC Operations Center. Responsible for rating and routing Department of Defense freight CONUS-wide, Lord said he enjoyed the program because it provided a wide range of logistics training, education, and assignment opportunities.

“The intern program provided me with a valuable baseline from which to build a successful career,” said Lord.

According to Lord’s supervisor, Edward Brown, Jr., Chief of the Domestic Business Processes Branch, it is Lord’s education, combined with training in the intern program, that makes him such a valuable employee.

“I know I can give Steve any task and get great results,” said Brown.

Susan Allen, MTMC Operations Center’s newly selected Chief of Plans, is another one of the DA Transportation Program’s success stories. Allen completed the program in 1997, and within five years, has progressed to a GS-14 manager.

Allen came into the intern program after working at West Point in passenger travel in the Installation Transportation Office, so she wasn’t a stranger in the career field. She attributes her success to her internship, her flexibility and mobility. Accepting assignments both stateside and overseas, Allen enjoyed the many networking and mentoring opportunities afforded to her along the way.

When applying for the program, Allen made it clear she was willing to travel. She said that mobility is a big key to being accepted into the intern program.

“Applicants must be mobile for both training and follow-on assignments in order to make it into the program,” said Savedge.

Those interested may apply for this competitive program under the Outstanding Scholar Program or the merit promotion system.

While there are cut-off dates for the merit promotion system, the announcement is normally made in January. Outstanding scholars may submit their applications on a continuous basis throughout the year. The 18-month internship usually begins in July, assigned to the Office of the Chief of Transportation, Fort Eustis, Va. If interns are assigned to MTMC, they will then complete a second 18-month training rotation, supporting the port operations of MTMC throughout the world.

MTMC’s latest group of interns will train stateside, as well as in Asia, Europe, and the Middle East. Morrow touts the interns’ value to the organization because they bring in experience from both military and civilian environments, and are willing to take on the tough assignments.

“Many progress out of MTMC, benefiting it in the long run by bringing knowledge of the command’s policies and practices to their new position,” said Morrow. “The 12 interns here now, and 9 already at MTMC locations worldwide, are trained to fulfill MTMC’s goal of projecting the force anywhere.”

By Katherine J. Floyd

MTMC Operations Center

COPYRIGHT 2003 U.S. Military Traffic Management Command

COPYRIGHT 2003 Gale Group