Cadets come to same place with different motives
by DeJanay Booth, June 11, 2014
A new wave of several hundred Army ROTC cadets arrived and boarded buses for the hour-long drive to Fort Knox at the Louisville International Airport on June 11.
Fort Knox hosts LTC, which a four-week course designed to encourage cadets to enter the Senior ROTC program, and LDAC, which helps cadets develop team-building and leadership skills. This is the first year both training events have been placed here.
Cadets started talking to each other, learning which school they went to and what year they are in. The bus ride took the students to the same place; however, each person had a different reason for coming and taking that ride to their training course.
For Cadet John Funk, upcoming senior from Penn State, participating in LDAC and wanting to join the Army started with the influence of one person in his life: “My father has been in the Army for 30 years and it’s what I know,” Funk said. “I like to travel and I like the independence. This training is like my job application for the future.”
Capt. Lyndsey Thompson, an officer assigned to the Inspector General at Cadet Command headquarters, said people join the Army and go through training for various reasons but many will do it because of family history.
“Everybody has different circumstances driving them to the military,” Thompson said. “The military provide so many opportunities.”
Cadet Ben Post, fifth-year senior from Virginia Tech, said joining the Army seemed like the right thing to do.
“They’re testing what you know,” Post said, whose father is in the Marine Corps. When Post was not able to join Marine Corps, he decided to go for the Army.
“[It] increases your confidence and test your composure,” he said.
Sgt. 1st Class Sheila Pippen advise cadets participating in LDAC to enjoy the experience. Pippen is from Ft. Bliss, Texas, augmenting cadet summer training this year.
“Take it one day at a time. If it’s meant to be, it’s meant to be,” Pippen said.
The buses peeled away from curb and drove toward the freeway.
“It will get hot on the bus so you might want to put the windows down,” a sergeant first class said to a group of cadets on the last bus. “It will be a 45-minute-to-one-hour drive so get comfortable.”
Arriving on base, the cadets walked off the bus before conducting a roll call and getting ready to be processed for their 29-day training, which could lead to a commission as an Army Officer