The Army is serious about placing more emphasis on cold-weather warfare as competition with “near-peers” Russia and China in the Arctic intensifies. So, the Army has redesigned the rectangular “Arctic” tab that denoted that a soldier had graduated the Northern Warfare Cold Weather Leader’s Course (CWLC). They have now made the tab into an arced-shaped one similar to the other currently authorized tabs such as the Ranger, Sapper, Advisor and the Special Forces tabs.

Army troops that graduated the Northern Warfare Training Center’s Cold Weather Leaders Course (CWLC) in late January became the first to wear the redesigned tab, according to the Army’s press release. And now soldiers assigned to any of the Pacific commands, and not just in Alaska, are authorized to wear the tab. 

“I think what makes U.S. Army Alaska and our units unique is that we are the Army’s proponent for cold-weather training,” said MG Peter B. Andrysiak Jr., U.S. Army Alaska commander. “We not only live here; we thrive here, and I want to make sure the tab properly recognizes our unique expertise.”

According to the press release in DVIDS, the former rectangular tab was worn below a soldier’s unit patch; the Arctic tab now rests above the patch, joining other such well-known skills tabs such as the Ranger or Sapper tab. 

Soldiers earn the Arctic tab after completing either the CWLC or the Cold Weather Orientation Course held at the Black Rapids Training Site run by U.S. Army Alaska (USARAK) Northern Warfare Training Center (NWTC) instructors. Upon graduating either course, soldiers are then qualified to teach basic, cold weather and ski training programs within their parent units.

“Anything can fail, even on the coldest days,” Steve Decker, an NWTC instructor, said. “Soldiers attending these cold-weather courses are taught ways to get around those failures.”

Some of the available tabs to serving Soldiers.