During the Branching Ceremony, cadets received their assignments from Lt. Col. Casey Randall, a professor of military science, in the ROTC lecture room of the Rickel Building.
Platoon Leader Rebekah Marquardt said the cadets were able to rank their preferences of about 17 army branches, but the army makes the final decision based on multiple factors.
Supply and Logistics Officer Joseph Medina received his first choice. Since he was in class and unable to be present at the ceremony, he called to find out that his assignment is active duty in the Medical Corps.
“I’m excited, it was my first choice,” Medina, a biology major, said. “In medical services, there is a lot of opportunity. I won’t necessarily be working at a hospital, but I’ll be working with doctors and nurses making sure they’re up to date and medically prepared.”
While not everyone received their first choice, cadets like Battalion Commander Chris Lamoureux still have a positive attitude toward their assignments. Lamoureux’s assignment is active duty in the Ordinance Corps, which is responsible for supplying ammunition to all the branches.
“To be honest, it was a huge surprise,” psychology major Lamoureux said. “It wasn’t my first choice. I wanted to fly helicopters, but honestly, I’m happy. I only have to give back four years, but I plan on doing at least 30 if I can. The military takes care of you.”
Operations Officer Nick Lister received an assignment that many associate with the army: active duty in the Infantry Corps.
“They’re the boots on the ground when you think of the military,” said Lister, a political science major. “I’ll lead 40 people in an infantry unit and establish relations. It’s what I wanted. It’s going to be a great experience.”
Marquardt said many cadets stressed for four years about what branch they would get, but she has known she would receive a Nursing Corps assignment since she declared nursing as a major.
“It relieved some stress,” Marquardt said. “I’m excited. Coming from a civilian family, it’s a totally different lifestyle that I’ll be living. I don’t know what it’s all going to bring, but I’m looking forward to the challenges.”
Lamoureux said after graduation, everyone who is active duty will go to a basic officer and leadership course that is branch-specific to their rank.
While some cadets will only serve their commitment time, others will make it a lifelong career.
“Why not do a job that I’m going to enjoy doing the rest of my life?” Lamoureux said. “You never work a day in your life if you love doing what you do.”