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Nine Weeks: a teacher's education in Army Basic Training Paperback – December 9, 2009

ISBN-13: 978-1449571436 ISBN-10: 1449571433

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 278 pages
  • Publisher: Ekot Literary Service (December 9, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1449571433
  • ISBN-13: 978-1449571436
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,486,729 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Rich currently teaches Education Technology at the University of San Francisco and works as a math and technology coach for a California education consulting firm. While he was teaching high school math in the San Francisco Bay Area he got an itch to serve his community, and joined the Army National Guard in 2007. Part-time soldier quickly became a full-time job. After his initial training Rich mobilized with the California's 69th Public Affairs Detachment and deployed to the Balkans in support of NATO's Kosovo Force. He has written extensively about his experiences on his military blog, "My Public Affairs." As a civilian, Rich has taught and coached at several Bay Area schools. He attended California State University East Bay (previously Hayward), where he met his wife, Esther. He earned his California teaching credential from CSU East Bay and his M.A. in Teaching Mathematics from Western Governors University. A Salt Lake City, Utah native, Rich has been a Californian for the past decade. He lives with his wife, Esther, and their son, Joseph Aniefiok, in Oakland.

More About the Author

Rich is a man who loves to write. He is the author of three books and the "Rich Like Me" political column at Washington Times Communities. He has taught at all levels, and continues to teach at the university level while enrolled in a doctoral program. Additionally, he works for the Peace & Conflict Studies program at the University of Utah.

Weird, because he is also a Soldier in the California National Guard. Two years ago his unit, the 69th Public Affairs Detachment, deployed to Kosovo, where he served as the Video Section Leader for Multi-National Task Force East, under NATO command. While there he wrote for the magazine, Guardian East. He also finished his first book, Nine Weeks, about his unique experience at Army basic training, and joined the ranks of military bloggers with "My Public Affairs."

Rich holds a masters degree in Mathematics Education from Western Governors University. Before that he roused rabble at CSU East Bay (previously "Hayward"). At CSUEB he founded a student newspaper, The California Statesman. While in school, he met his wife, Esther, at a political forum.

In between teaching assignments and his National Guard commitments, Rich works on his upcoming books. You can read about them by going to the "Books" menu above.

He resides in Salt Lake City with Esther and their two young sons.

Customer Reviews

As a student who plans to be a teacher this book really spoke to me.
A. Estrin
This book talks about Rich Stowell's experience in the Army National Guard as he spends nine weeks at a rigorous training camp.
stusf
It was an interesting book to read and I found it very detailed, well written and honest.
Tammy Suto

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By ttmorr on December 17, 2009
Format: Paperback
Basic training is a once in a lifetime experience. There is nothing to compare it to. So it is hard to explain what it is like to those that have never experienced it before. Therefore it is remarkable, the detail and insight that Rich Stowell has managed to capture. With his meticulous journal and letter writing he was able to recreate all the ups and downs, the emotions, the commraderie, and the abdsurdities that make up basic training. His decision to join the Army later in life also adds a unique and insightful perspective of a sometimes frustrating and baffling program. If you want to experience basic training without going to basic training, I highly recommend you read Nine Weeks.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Tammy Suto VINE VOICE on March 15, 2010
Format: Paperback
Nine Weeks...for civilians that term used to mean a period in school. For soldiers, Nine Weeks often times can mean nine weeks of the most grueling time in their lives. This book offers a rare glimpse into those weeks as soldiers in the Army struggle to complete basic training.

As civilians we don't often understand or see the hardships these men and women go through except in movies. Mr. Stowell's book, Nine Weeks, gives us a rarely seen honest glimpse into this time as he shares his experiances. It was an interesting book to read and I found it very detailed, well written and honest.

If you're a civilian who has wondered what goes on in a basic training camp then pick this book up. I think it will give many people a newfound respect for those who serve in the Army.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Nevada J. Smith on January 5, 2010
Format: Paperback
Richard gives an insight into the traditional young boys right of passage that is 'basic training' with a fresh and witty insight that will make you laugh out loud. His experience, as a teacher, grants him a rare perspective on how the Army operates. If you are a Soldier you will be brought back to the best and worst days of your own experience. And if you are a Civilian you will gain a hard to obtain perspective on what the average recruit goes through. I have read this book twice already and delighted in it each time. Rich Stowell has agreed to begin a sequel, possibly called 9 months, that catalogues the experience of his first deployment, if he sells 1000 copies of his book so please people buy this book. The laughs alone are worth your money
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Jane E. Searight on February 11, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Very insightful and extremely well written. Anyone who works with students should read this; one receives an intimate, day-to-day experience with all things military which can only help prepare students for one possible life choice.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By dwolf52000 on October 9, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am about to go off to Basic Training at Ft. Sill, am 34 years old, and have a Masters Degree. This book looked to be the perfect preparatory material for me. However what I bought was, essentially, a bitch session. The drill sergeants in charge of his platoon looked little more than immature bullies, while other platoons had much more lenient drill sergeants. In 251 pages and 10 weeks (9 plus reception) I saw what started as a mature individual turn into a whiny 14 year old away from his home for the first time. No doubt that BCT is challenging and will push you to your limit and then some. And I have no doubt that this is how the author remembers his time in training. The one incident that really threw me and inspired this review was towards the end of the book. At the end of training, the drill sergeants present each trainee with a "coin". It is a memento of the challenges overcome. In this case the memento was a dog tag with the Army Core Values. Within two sentences the author dismisses the entire nine weeks by nonchalantly giving it away to his niece. I would be proud to get through BCT, especially without injury and graduate on time. It is a personal challenge. But to the author, BCT is an affront to his intelligence and all things curriculum based. The one use I had for the book was to get a glimpse as to the timeline of the process and what happens. It is for this reason only that this review got two stars instead of one.

If you do happen to pick up the book, note two oddities that I have found. One is that the chapter one title is the heading for the entire book. Two is that his spell check determined that quite is a perfect substitute for quiet.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Timothy J. Bazzett on May 2, 2010
Format: Paperback
NINE WEEKS is an interesting look at BCT from the standpoint of an older, better educated recruit than is the norm in today's all-volunteer army. Stowell was 31, newly married, with a couple of college degrees under his belt when he enlisted, determined to do his duty as a patriotic American. It didn't take him long to wonder if he'd done the right thing or just a very stupid thing. This kind of wondering is pretty typical, actually. I remember having the same second thoughts myself my first time through BCT at age 18, feeling pretty low and hearing other recruits crying in their pillows. Stowell did persevere in his training and also kept a pretty complete record of activities from all ten weeks (that first one, in reception camp, he learned to his dismay, doesn't count). It's not the first time someone's done this. Peter Tauber's 70s memoir, SUNSHINE SOLDIERS, is a classic - and funny - example of this kind of service document - a book that is deservedly back in print recently. Stowell's book is similar, but lacks the sense of humor that marked Tauber's account and made it so memorable. There were a few funny parts in NINE WEEKS, but for the most part, Stowell seemed to take himself and the whole experience just a mite too seriously. Rich Stowell's book updates the BCT experience and could make a useful BCT primer for young men considering enlisting in today's army. I admire him for doing what he did, mostly because he didn't HAVE to do it. He felt it was his duty, and he responded to that. It's unfortunate there aren't more young men like Stowell in a country whose stretched-thin military could certainly use an infusion of more educated recruits. As an eight-year army veteran myself, I will recommend this book to young people who might be swayed toward a life of military service. - Tim Bazzett, author of SOLDIER BOY: AT PLAY IN THE ASA
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