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Minnesota National Guard
Minnesota educators get a tour of Camp Ripley

Educator Lift CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - High school and university educators from across the southern half of Minnesota ventured to Camp Ripley March 22, 2016, for an educational tour of the facility and the National Guard's capabilities.

"The purpose is to provide our Minnesota educators with an understanding of the Recruiting and Retention Battalion's mission and to showcase the activities that typically go on at Camp Ripley for most of the Minnesota National Guard," said Maj. Ryan Kelly, deputy commander of the Minnesota National Guard's Recruiting and Retention Battalion.

This event, to Camp Ripley, is the second of four Minnesota National Guard-supported visits involving teachers and principals, as well as athletic and administrative staff from schools around the metro area.

The visit kicked off following a short UH-60 Blackhawk ride from St. Paul, with an informational brief from Col. Scott St. Sauver, Camp Ripley garrison commander. The briefing highlighted the activities and capabilities of Camp Ripley and how the installation operates within the community while meeting its state and federal missions.

"Events like this give us a key advantage to show why choosing service in the Minnesota National Guard benefits the young men and women these educators interact with every day," said Kelly.

After taking in the information about the National Guard, everyone got the opportunity for familiarization on the weapons used by today's Service members. This weapons training took place at the Engagement Skills Trainer or EST2000, which is used as a simulations training tool prior to going onto a range.

Additionally the group got to tour several departments on Camp Ripley including the Consolidated Maintenance Activity where vehicles, weapons and equipment of the National Guard is serviced and maintained.

"It's an amazing opportunity, I have never seen some of these things up close," said Mark Forsberg, education liaison at Minnesota Office of Higher Education.

"I am impressed with how much Camp Ripley does, not just for the military, but all the partnerships and programs it has," said Anne Pherson, a teacher with Lakeville North.

Following a trip through Minnesota's military history at the museum, the group returned to St. Paul.

The positive and strong relationship between Minnesota's citizen Soldiers and the communities they come from are what makes the National Guard a successful and reliable organization. For many units the bonds within the local communities begin in the businesses, schools, and social centers they live in and work in.

March 23, 2016
by Staff Sgt. Anthony Housey
Camp Ripley Public Affairs



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