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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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Senior explains meaning behind Corps Brass

Corps Brass
Photo by File
Corps Brass

Like many traditions within the Corps of Cadets at Texas A&M University, a significant milestone is a freshman earning a piece of metal that they wear on their left collars, the “Corps Brass.” The brass signifies the Corps of Cadets’ principal goal of producing exceptional military officers and statesmen.
The insignia shows a sword crossed with a fasces. This symbolizes the military side of the Corps of Cadets, since this institution produces so many quality officers that end up being stationed across the world. The fasces symbolizes the political involvement of the Corps. There have been numerous political offices held by Aggies since the school’s inception in 1876. Whether it be a small office or large, Aggies have held these billets and have done exceptionally well. Finally, the knight’s head represents the knightly gentlemen aspect. “Per Unitatem Vis,” meaning “through unity strength” is etched on the top of the insignia to represent the hard work freshmen go through to earn this.
What does it actually mean to those who wear it? Wearing Corps Brass is the acceptance into a 139-year-old brotherhood — a brotherhood with distinguished heroes and distinguished leaders. This is a tradition that includes Medal of Honor winners, generals, politicians, noble military officers, executives and many others.
For a freshman to earn it, he or she must go through different phases during their freshman year, which starts following the first week of classes. Different phases designed to highlight the soldier, statesman and knightly gentlemen aspects and teach them what it is and what the Corps represents.
Earning Corps Brass is more than receiving it your freshman year — it’s going through four years of the Corps and living up to the values it provides. It’s more than a piece of metal you wear on you collar — it represents the lifestyle that Aggie Cadets choose for themselves, as well as the hardships and various leadership challenges they face. Ultimately, it’s a testament and representation of our aspirations and goals. Earning that piece of brass is not just a semester long process, but rather a four year process — spending a semester earning the right to wear it, and three years living up to it.
This is just another tradition that separates Texas A&M’s Corps of Cadets from any other senior military college and service academy.
Guest column by David Sapre
Geographic Info Science and Tech senior

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