JROTC marches toward greatness in first competition


photo or infographic by Lainey Osborn

LOOKING SHARP. With their uniforms in perfect order, members of the AFJROTC program prepare to take the floor at competition. The female color guard and the academic team both placed high on the ranks at their first competition at Oak Ridge High School.

You’ve seen them roaming the halls in their perfectly groomed uniforms. You’ve seen them present the country’s colors on Friday night. What some people might not know is that the program competes in many competitions throughout the school year.

The Willis AFJROTC program competed in their first competition last Saturday, October 15. The categories that the students participated in were armed regulation, unarmed regulation, marksmanship, colorguard and exhibition. The female color guard took first place, and the academic team brought home second place.

“The competition affects the student body and the school overall by bringing more attention to the school. It also gives the school something to be proud of,” senior Lieutenant Colonel Jasmine Rodriguez said. “Just like any sport, JROTC impacts the school in such positive ways, giving everyone the chance to feel confident in the school they come from.”

The program is unique from other sports and clubs because of the valuable lessons it teaches students who join it.

“JROTC teaches you more about teamwork and leadership while still keeping it fun and enjoyable.” junior Second Lieutenant Bethany Lerch said.

The first competition was a good opportunity to introduce people who are new to the environment and what the expectations are.

“The competition shows the people who have never participated in one to see what it is like to compete.” junior First Lieutenant Madeley Nichols said. “It shows them how communication and teamwork plays a major role and also what to expect for the next competition.”