The Sapper Tab: Army Overview

The Sapper tab is worn by those elite Soldiers who have passed the Sapper Leader Course. Sappers are combat engineers who advance to the front lines with infantry units.

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Sapper Tab

My name is Major Aaron Titko. I’m a 21 Alpha and I have the Sapper tab. I am Captain French Pope, I am a 21 Alpha combat engineer, and I have the Sapper tab. The term Sapper comes from a, um, from back in medieval times when people would dig trenches to, in order to get artillery, close to, close to castles in order for them to destroy those fortifications. The trenches that were dug were called Saps and they were dug by people that were called Sappers. Those were the first combat engineers. As a Sapper, our area of expertise is mobility to ensure mobility of the unit. Sapper school is open to all combat engineers and company-grade engineer officers. It’s also open to infantry, scouts and other combat arms individuals. The benefits of being a Sapper in a modern Army is that when another leader or another Soldier looks at you, they know that you have done the patrolling, you know that you’re going to protect the Soldier and you’re going to lead from the front. I wanted to earn the Sapper tab because it showed that I was a master of my craft as a combat engineer. It gives you a little bit of instant credibility when you walk into a room. To get the tab was a very proud moment in my life. It was a moment of realization that, you know, I can do whatever I set myself out to do. When I see another Soldier with a Sapper tab, I know what I’m getting, I know that I’m getting a tested leader, that I’m getting a combat engineer that’s an expert in his craft and I know that I can depend on that individual. I tell any Soldier that approaches me that wants to go to Sapper leader course that it’s a very tough course, very rigorous training and you need to be prepared mentally and both physically to go through the training. During the Sapper tab you gotta go to the Sapper leader course, you have to prove that you’ve got the physical and mental stamina and you have what it takes to master combat engineering skills.