Army Chaplain Candidate Program
You do not need to wait until ordination to join the Army Chaplaincy. You can train to become an Army Chaplain at the same time you are training for the ministry. The training and experience you will receive as a Chaplain Candidate will be a rich addition to your ministerial education and training. All Chaplain Candidates are commissioned officers assigned to the Army Reserve in the Chaplain Branch.
Chaplain Basic Officer Leadership Course
All Chaplain Candidates are encouraged to attend Chaplain Basic Officers Leadership Course (CHBOLC). CHBOLC is 12 weeks long and is offered three times a year (winter, summer and fall). Normally a candidate does the first half of CHBOLC (Chaplain Initial Military Training/CIMT and Phase 1) as soon as possible since it is a prerequisite for all other training in the Chaplain Candidate Program. Once half way through their qualifying degree, Chaplain Candidates can complete Phases II and III. Candidates who enter the Chaplain Candidate Program after the half-way point of their graduate program may complete all of CHBOLC at one time.
A Chaplain Candidate may train up to 30 days each year under the supervision of a senior chaplain at a military installation. This training, called a "practicum," is offered to all candidates once they have completed Phase 1 of CHBOLC.
Practicums vary in type and location. They include broad based experiences at active duty installations, West Point's summer camp, ROTC's Cadet summer camp, Army Reserve Commands, garrison ministries, combat ministries, medical training and administrative support.
Practicums, which may vary in length from a minimum of 12 days to 30 days may be done at most any time of the year.