West Point-trained officer prepared to lead
West Point trained-officer prepared to lead
(Georgetown, Guyana. August 8, 2019)
Commander-in-Chief, His Excellency, President David Granger, presented Lieutenant (Lt) Britany Van Lange with her Instrument of Commission on June 27 last, cementing her status as an officer of the Guyana Defence Force (GDF). Trained at the United States Military Academy (West Point), Lt Van Lange began her military career as an officer cadet in the GDF Standard Officer Course 48 (SOC48).
The young officer credits her short but relevant cadet training with preparing her for BEAST, a boot-camp type of orientation to the US military. “I had enlisted to be trained as an officer of the GDF. Although the time spent training locally was short, it prepared was sufficient to give an appreciable grounding in things military,” she said.
“I am happy to be back in Guyana where this all started for me, though I must say that I have entered a somewhat steep learning curve.”
She shared that “Even though the US training environment and military traditions are quite different from what obtains here in Guyana, this is where I have to make my training count, and I am certain that excellence will continue to be the goal I pursue.”
The West Point graduate earned a Bachelors Degree with a major in Engineering Psychology and a minor in Eurasian studies. However, her path to this academic achievement began at the ABC Academy, Mae’s Schools and the Nations Secondary School. She then proceeded to Bishops’ High School where she successfully completed twelve CSEC subjects then matriculated at Queen’s College where she earned passes in four CAPE subjects.
An accomplished swimmer on the local and international scene, Lt Van Lange explained that while she was studying at West Point, she opted to broaden her athletic exposure by pursuing other sporting disciplines such as soccer, hockey, rugby, and even managing a Division One academy football team. The academy has a heavy focus on leadership training, and, in this regard, I believed that this was important for my all-round development,” she said.
“My military career is only now beginning and it is difficult to say at this point how I would see it progressing. I have so much to learn. Maybe, in a year from now, when I have become fully acclimatised to the GDF, its role and my role as an officer, I might find my niche. For now, I plan on continuing to learn and adapt, and, in that process, to demonstrate my capabilities for being the leader I have been trained to be,” Lt Van Lange offers.