FORT MCCOY, Wis. - As a senior in high school, Sgt. 1st Class
Troy Davis may have lacked college plans but was brimming with
motivation. Eager to experience new things and challenges, he
enlisted in the Army immediately after graduating from his hometown
high school in Highland, Utah.
He couldn't wait to get
going, knowing that the military would provide him with new avenues
of learning. He did not know, however, just how much his experience
with the Army would prepare him for success in his future.
Army Sgt. 1st Class Troy Davis
(left), a financial management technician currently serving as the first sergeant for the 395th Financial Management Support Unit, assists Spc. Bryan Spaulding, a financial management technician assigned to the 395th, with balancing currency on the Deployable Dispersing System during the Combat Support Training Exercise 86-15-03 at Fort McCoy, Wis., Aug. 14,
2014. The exercise is designed to immerse units into a tactical environment that replicates what they would experience in a real-world mission. (U.S. Army photo by Pfc. Claudia Rocha)
As an Arabic linguist for the Army, Davis traveled the
world, doing missions in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and
Indonesia. He served as an interpreter and teacher to local
nationals and said he appreciated the experience of
interacting with people of different cultures.
Army had some great opportunities that I couldn't get
anywhere else at the time,” he said. “It was one of the most
rewarding experiences.” br>
After serving seven years of active
duty as a military intelligence Soldier, Davis said he was
ready to pursue a civilian career, but not necessarily ready
to stop serving in the Army.
Joining the Army Reserve
allowed Davis to do both. And while this seemed like the
perfect stepping stone for his transition into the civilian
workforce, it did not come without some reservations.
“When I got out [of active duty], one of my biggest
worries was that my Army experience would not directly
correlate to anything in the civilian world,” said Davis.
“What I later found was that so many things I did in the
Army were direct correlations to what I did in the civilian
In 2004, Davis decided to pursue a bachelor
of business administration-finance degree at the University
of Texas at Austin. During this time, Davis learned just how
much his Army experience - specifically his serious mindset
and task-oriented perspective - helped him succeed.
“[The Army] gave me discipline and leadership skills,” said
Davis, “all of which helped me to become a better student.”
Not only did the military instill desirable character
traits in Davis, but the Reserve also made it possible for
him to give school his undivided attention.
Reserve provided me with great benefits that allowed me to
not have to get a part-time job beyond my internships, which
was hugely beneficial,” said Davis. “I could focus solely on
my education, and I finished college debt-free, which would
not have happened if I had gone other routes.”
Realizing how much the Army impacted his experience as a
student, Davis decided that associating his civilian career
in finance to his Army Reserve career would be mutually
beneficial to both him and his employer.
re-classed his military job to a financial management
technician, furthering his education and experience in
“After I started working as an investment
consultant, I found it a lot easier to relate my reserve
career to that field,” said Davis. “The overlapping skills
required for both of my jobs created a conducive working
relationship. I've gone further in my civilian career
because of the Army.”
The concept of “Citizen
Soldiers” mutually benefits Reserve members like Davis and
their civilian employers. Companies gain employees with
unique experience while simultaneously improving the
readiness of the Army Reserve.
that Soldiers have a little bit more seriousness and
discipline to them,” said Davis. “They tend to be more
reliable, and that's what employers want.”
been working with Scottrade Financial Services since 2009,
and said the company has been very supportive, with the
understanding that he does a lot to support them as well.
“I try to be one of the best employees that they have,
and because I'm such a good employee, the company has been
cooperative and even appreciative of my commitment with the
Army Reserve. They allow me all the time I need for training
or potential deployments,” he added.
spring, Davis' unit, the 395th Financial Management Support
Unit of Salt Lake City, was suddenly called to mobilize.
Although Davis did not deploy, the decision-making and
planning process involved required an increased level of
commitment from him and much more time away from work.
“My employer showed willingness to do whatever it took
to release me from my obligations there,” said Davis. “And
they did a lot to coordinate fill in support.”
received that same consideration as he and the other members
of the 395th recently converged on Fort McCoy, Wisconsin, to
participate in an annual training exercise, Diamond Saber.
Diamond Saber is just one of several reserve unit exercises
being held as part of the 86th Training Division's Combat
Support Training Exercise, a massive multi-component and
joint endeavor providing units with real-world training to
prepare them for missions around the world.
training, like all other Army Reserve training, is critical
to ensuring our readiness as Soldiers,” Davis said. “The
support I receive from my civilian workplace is stellar. I'm
very appreciative of all that they do to make my training
By U.S. Army Pfc. Claudia Rocha
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