BOLC-B: What to Expect for New Transportation, Quartermaster, and Ordnance Officers
Starting in summer of 2010, all Logistics officers were moved onto a new training site: the Army Logistics University or ALU at Fort Lee, Virginia (near the cities of Hopewell, Chester, and Petersburg). The following is a guide which can help prospective new commissionees and 2nd lieutenant's show up ready for battle. The ALU is a brand new facility as of summer 2010, and things are still extremely fluid as the student battalions have been adapting to the training site. Although things change rapidly, there are a few tips below that may not be posted on the website and which can make your life a lot easier if you know them. The old BOLC-II and BOLC-III cycles have been abolished; new trainees no longer receive several weeks of infantry tactics at Fort Benning, but instead proceed directly to Ft. Lee.
The ALU is located on post at Fort Lee, and the morning lines to get on post are HORRENDOUS. If you are a new student, you will only be able to acquire a temporary sticker at Fort Lee that is useless on other posts. A good solution to save yourself some time is to go to whatever post is nearest your home before you leave for training and get a handy universal DOD (Department of Defense) sticker, which is the one usually located on the bottom left of the windshield and is often red and white or blue and white. If your sticker is expired, you will not be able to get on post with it. To pass the gate, you must have a valid and current driver's license, military I.D., registration, and proof of insurance. Without a sticker, you can only go in the Lee (main) Gate and proceed under the inspection hut; at this gate, you can expect to wait from 5-15 minutes with or without a sticker, so plan this into your travel time if you will live off post.
Although there is some additional post housing being built right next to ALU, it was barely started as of September 2010 and will probably not be complete until summer 2011. Bearing this in mind, post housing will probably already be full when you get there. Refer to the ALU website; to get reimbursed for off-post housing, you MUST acquire a Statement of Non-Availability from post lodging! The per diem rate for Fort Lee as of September 2010 was 70 dollars per day; this means that you can get reimbursed for living arrangements that cost up to seventy dollars per day, but if you take a place that costs less than that, you will only get reimbursed for what you spend. There are some very nice apartments located not far from post; Rivermont is about 20 minutes away, and Acqua is about 5 minutes away among others. Although there are many places to stay, the one that I stayed at was Rivermont, and it can be reached by calling John from Corporate Living Solutions at (804)314-5790. Other allowances associated with travel depend upon your orders, and they differ based upon which component you are a member of.
Don't be afraid to call the student battalion! These soldiers are happy to provide you with information regarding your class. My orders had me show up 24 hours early, so you can save yourself the headache by calling and showing up when you need to. You should have a number for your student company sent to you by email, but the number for the C.Q. desk is (804)765-8440, and they should either have details about report times or be able to refer you to the appropriate authority.