ROTC students rewarded

By Joseph Fitzpatrick, Contributing Writer, Photographer
Published On April 29, 2009 in Volume 40, Issue 23
It has been quite an interesting and exciting year for the Reserve Officers Training Corps and the Department of Military Science here at CNU. An extensive amount of work has been put in by all the cadets and their superiors to help make them scholars, athletes and leaders.

The weekly schedule of an ROTC cadet includes Physical Training three times a week, Military Science class for an hour and 15 minutes Tuesdays and Thursdays on leadership styles and army structures and a Practical Lab Wednesdays on subjects such as land navigation and various battle drills, such as Ambush and Knock out a Bunker. There is also one weekend field training exercise (FTX) each semester. During these field training exercises, the MSIII cadets are tested in their land navigation and basic leadership skills, based on the Armys Troop Leading Procedures.

One way to test the cadets decision making and leadership is through Field Leadership Reaction Course (FLRC), where the cadets will break down into squads, groups of 8-10, explained Cadet Elizabeth Keegan, who is a senior. The squad leader will receive information about a given obstacle and the restrictions placed upon the group.

Some of these restrictions include completing the challenge without speaking, or without touching the ground, and every obstacle must be completed within a time limit. Also, the squad will encounter various challenges throughout a lane, from media on the battlefields (MOB), civilians on the battlefield (COB), and various opposing forces (OPFOR).

In addition to each FTX, each MSIII cadet is expected to attend various 18 Hour Drills on weekends to practice their Land Nav and STX lanes, added Cadet Stephen Obrien, who is also a senior. There is also a mandatory 4 day training event called Cluster FTX where MSIII cadets from universities like CNU, CWM, ODU, HU, and NSU are graded on their leadership and technical skills.

The last major event of this year was the Spring Awards Ceremony, which always takes place in the Ferguson Center for the Arts. During this ceremony, cadets are rewarded for their dedication towards the program and their individual successes.

Awards are presented to cadets from both CNU and William and Mary who have excelled on their Army Physical Fitness Test (APFT), Deans List, greatest improvement within the program, and perfect attendance, said Major Nicholas Christoff.

Each award is accompanied by a ribbon that can be worn on the cadets Class A uniform until they graduate from the program.

As a send off for the cadets and congratulations for a years worth of hard work and commitment, ROTC will be hosting a year end barbecue followed by a showing of the movie Tropic Thunder on the Great Lawn, which is open to all CNU students.

After this semester ends, The 2009 Commissioning Ceremony will conclude ROTC events for the semester. It will recognize all of the graduating seniors in the ROTC program as they officially enter the US Army as Second Lieutenants. It will take place on May 15, 2009 at 2 p.m. in the DSU Ballroom. This event is open and everyone is welcome to attend.