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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Fish out of water

Company+A-1+featuring+the+Class+of+2026+cadets+during+Freshman+Review+on+Saturday%2C+Aug+20.
Megan Williams

Company A-1 featuring the Class of 2026 cadets during Freshman Review on Saturday, Aug 20.

In palpable humidity, hundreds of cadets took their places on Simpson Drill Field, as friends, family and current and former cadets gathered to watch the Class of 2026 officially join the ranks of the Corps of Cadets. 
Fish Review, the culminating event of Freshman Orientation Week, or FOW, for members of Texas A&M’s Corps of Cadets took place on Saturday, Aug. 20 at Simpson Drill Field. Following step off at 8:30 a.m., the event highlighted freshmen cadets as they took their Cadet Oath and stood proudly with their new outfits. As the Aggie Band began to play the War Hymn, each outfit marched around the drill field and headed back to The Quad.   

Freshman cadet and clarinet player Jezebelle Villarreal said FOW was a challenging experience, but something she ultimately came to appreciate. 

“I opened myself to new opportunities that I never thought I could do before,” Villarreal said. “I also gained more confidence with everything thrown at me. As time went by, I was able to develop friendships and relationships among my outfit. I felt more at home and I was able to welcome the new family I had.” 

Villarreal said although Freshmen Review took place in the heat and humidity, she enjoyed it and appreciated the support from attendees. 

“I loved that I got to see everyone in the Corps, not just the band,” Villarreal said. “I really just felt united with everyone. I love seeing our fans and see[ing] my family watch me be inducted. It was really nice.” 

Kylie Wyly, mother of freshman cadet Koben Wyly in Outfit C-1, was proudly wearing an Aggie mom shirt and holding a lawn chair she brought to watch the event and said she was excited to see her son in the Freshmen Review. 

“He’s wanted to do this since he was little,” Kylie said. “I wanted to be here to support him and be excited for him.” 

Kylie said her son has worked hard to make it to this moment. 
“He’s got a very strong purpose,” Kylie said. “As a parent, I’m very proud. I’m excited to see him grow, mature and become his own person, also the values and integrity that he’s going to get along the way.” 

Instructor of naval science Lieutenant William de Groh, Class of 2015, said Freshmen Review was an important moment for him and he was happy to return as faculty. 

“It was a culmination event of all our hard work,” DeGroh said. “In order for us to present ourselves to our parents and show what our progressions look like, from when we first arrived here to the end of FOW. Coming back as an instructor, it’s good to see a lot of traditions are the same and that [Freshmen Review is] still going strong.”

DeGroh, standing next to fellow servicemen and women, said Freshmen Review shows a cadet’s friends and family they have made an effort to become a better version of themselves. 

“They have put in a lot of dedication and hard work to persevere through the challenges that FOW presents them that they may not be used to coming from high school or from different backgrounds,” DeGroh said. “There’s that kind of challenge and mindset to be in [to overcome] challenge that I think is still so important.”

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