Hohenfels, Germany.(September 24, 2023): In this photo by 1st Sgt. Michel Sauret, Army Specialist Dylan Horak, a network communication systems specialist with the 44th Expeditionary Signal Battalion, reconnects cables to a communication system after a drone attack during Saber Junction 23. This annual exercise with NATO allies and partners included 4,000 participants from sixteen different countries. Participants trained with drones to simulate unmanned aerial combat including fixing damage to facilities.
Network communication systems specialists install tactical fiber and cable wiring, help troubleshoot computer systems, and routine maintenance on assigned vehicles, power generators, and equipment. They give technical assistance at the unit level to install automated telecommunications systems and are often called upon to repair malfunctioning network connections.
Created in October 2022, the network communication systems specialist was the first new military occupational specialty in two years. To become a 25H, students undergo 19 weeks of Advanced Individual Training at the U.S. Army Signal School at Fort Gordon, Georgia following their standard 10 weeks of Basic Combat Training. Soldiers learn to operate multiple nodes, or communications hubs, transmission assemblages, and ways to develop/splice fiber cables. Throughout the course, Soldiers also train on warrior tasks and battle drills to prepare them for a comprehensive field evaluation prior to graduation.
Commanders count on these highly skilled technicians to keep their communications up and running.