BOSS offers various trips around Europe

By Alice Verberne
U.S. Army Garrison Baumholder Marketing Manager

Get in on the action, gain promotion points and have a great time

Soldiers are returning from Afghanistan, and Spc. Jen-Lin Wang, Better Opportunities for Single Soldiers Program president, is ready to keep Soldiers entertained.

“I have found through recent experience that single Soldiers here in Baumholder are ready to take trips to vacation destinations such as Britain and Spain, so we have expanded our already very active program to include more long distance destinations,” said Wang.

The Baumholder BOSS program has grown from a program with nearly 20 in attendance in just three months. “There are many factors involved,” said Wang. “The Soldiers are now back and ready to participate. And second, we have strong leadership support thanks to Command Sgt. Maj. Augustus Wah,” Wang added.

“The program is so successful that other garrisons are now calling us to see if we can talk to their BOSS program leaders about our sudden success in numbers of participants. For example, we had over 100 people attend our New Year’s trip to London. The trip included three days and two nights with lodging at the Premier Inn in London, breakfast and a guided sightseeing tour of London.

Soldiers also witnessed the changing of the guard, New Year’s Eve celebration in Trafalgar Square and visits to Westminster Abbey, the Tower of London and Windsor Castle. In addition, members of the group were offered a side trip to Stonehenge, the ancient lunar/solar worship area located in Wiltshire and estimated to have been built around 3100 BC.

“This was our first try at a long distance, more expensive venture,” he said. “Everyone in the planning and leadership were very pleased, and the Soldiers seemed grateful to have something exciting to do.

“Now that we have established a solid program and are taking BOSS Soldiers on trips, we are getting them involved in volunteering and educating them on opportunities they have available to them focusing on the most popular part of the program — having fun,” Wang said.

BOSS has branched into partnerships with other facilities to enhance Soldier quality of life. They have partnered with Army Community Service to build upon the skills they learn in the ACS “Culture College” program (where students get hands-on practice on subjects that range from how to take the local bus to how to order a meal in German). “Once Soldiers have gained skills in Culture College, they learn by applying it in real-life situations.

Wang has Soldiers use public transport to not-so-distant locations such as Frankfurt and Saarbrücken where he shows them the restaurant and cultural scene. “Eventually, we plan to take the group to destinations like Mallorca, Barcelona and Paris to name a few,” he said. “Now that we understand more about what our Soldiers here in Baumholder want to do, we can offer better and more extensive programming,” Wang said. “Our next big trip will be to Spain.”

If you are a single Soldier or geographical bachelor and want to participate, get in touch with your unit BOSS representative or BOSS President Wang at mil 485-8251, civ (06783) 6-8251 or cell 016-227-08384.