I never had the opportunity to visit Germany until I filled out an application to train and receive training from the German Armed Forces.
The Military Reserve Exchange Program, established between the U.S. Office of the Secretary of Defense Reserve Affairs and German Ministry of Defense in 1985, promotes unique training experiences and cultural education for reserve component officers. Each year both the U.S. and German military sends approximately 22 reserve component officers to receive training and share experiences within their individual skill sets. The United Kingdom and Denmark military also has an exchange program partnership with the U.S. military.
I found the program invaluable in the sense of enabling U.S. military members to see and participate firsthand in another country’s military operations and best practices. This was one of those opportunities which not only develops a military officer professionally, but promotes personal friendships and building relationships abroad.