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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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High schoolers compete at NJROTC showcase

 
 

The Texas A&M Naval ROTC hosted the Area 10 Texas NJROTC State Championship Friday and Saturday for high school programs across the state.
Friday’s competitions took place on Simpson Drill Field and included physical training and academic testing. Saturday held a variety of events from color guard to armed and unarmed drill and exhibitions at the Student Recreation Center.
Lt. Doug Trask, naval science instructor and event organizer, said more than 700 students from 17 high schools across Texas participated in the competitions.
“This is a good way for the Navy ROTC program to reach out and recruit people for the Navy, for Navy ROTC and for Texas A&M,” Trask said.
Veronica Bentley, senior environmental geoscience major, said the competitions are meant to test the body and said the event was a good opportunity for A&M to show students what the University is all about.
“It’s a really good recruiting event for Texas A&M,” Bentley said. “When the schools come here they see the Aggie spirit and how strong of a community we are here, and it promotes the military and the University as a whole.”
Bentley said she participated in similar competitions when she was in high school and saw it as a good lead-in to NROTC at Texas A&M and beyond.
“It gave me a step in the door to what it would be like to be in the military, prepared me with drill and knowledge of the service and was a good learning experience,” Bentley said. “It doesn’t completely prepare you but it gives you a good taste of what it would be like.”
Eitze Huisman, senior industrial distribution major, said cadets preparing to enter the military after their time at Texas A&M helped evaluate the high school cadets.
“All the Navy and Marine Corps contracted for shipment, that will be commissioned into the military, are staffing the events to help put it on,” Huisman said.
Duy Tran, a high school student from West Brook High School in Beaumont, Texas, said his team started working in the summer to prepare for the competition. He said his favorite event is color guard because it’s one of the few times he gets to work with a rifle. He plans to attend Texas A&M after high school and will possibly join the Corps of Cadets.
“[The competition was] fantastic,” Tran said. “I came here last year but it’s even better this year.”
Trask said he liked getting to see the programs’ end product – a year’s worth of work coming to a head at the state competition.
“I just like reaching out, the recruiting aspect,” Trask said. “It’s fun to work with all these teams that have worked so hard to come here, to see what they do and go and watch some of these teams. It’s very precise and obviously took a lot of practice so it’s cool to see all of their hard work come out to play.”

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