The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

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ROTC students march in Veterans’ Day parade

 ROTC students march in Veterans Day parade
ROTC students march in Veterans’ Day parade

ROTC students march in Veterans’ Day parade

Thursday morning while most students fought to stay awake inclass, several Air Force Reserve Officers’ Training Corpstudents from SMU marched along side veterans, active duty soldiersand national guardsmen in the Veterans’ Day Parade indowntown Dallas.

“Marching in the parade is a really big honor because weare the only college-level ROTC detachment doing this,” AirForce ROTC member at the University of North Texas Brian Gluckmansaid.

This is the second year UNT/SMU ROTC students have participatedin the parade. In formation and full uniform, the cadets marchedfrom Union Auditorium to Dallas City Hall.

While SMU doesn’t officially have an Air Force ROTCprogram of its own, interested students can complete the programthrough UNT in Denton.

The Air Force ROTC is a program that prepares college studentsto become Air Force officers after graduation and teaches themvaluable leadership and management skills. The ROTC program offersscholarships for two, three and four years, however aftercompleting the first year, students must either contract with theAir Force for a job after graduation or drop their scholarship.

Once a student completes the program, he/she automaticallybecomes an officer and receives a job through the Air Forceimmediately after graduating.

“The Air Force has so many jobs out there. Every job yousee in the real world, basically there’s a similar job in theAir Force,” Kevin Ochs, a sophomore electrical engineeringmajor, said.

“The day you graduate, you have a job waiting for you anda paycheck the next month.”

Ochs heard about the program in high school through his olderbrother who was a member.

He and other SMU ROTC members make the 45-minute drive to UNTevery Wednesday to take class for three hours.

He has a partial scholarship through the program and iscontracted to work for the Air Force for four years aftergraduation.

“I can’t fly -I’m colorblind- but I want touse my major. What I want to do is research and development,”he said.

Ochs is proud of his membership and said that wearing his navyblue uniform on the SMU campus once a week reminds him that, as amember of the ROTC, he is always representing the Air Force.

“We have a lot of responsibility. I have a lot more tolose,” he said.

Today, with the situation in Iraq and the Middle East, Ochs andhis fellow ROTC members might be nervous about possibly beingshipped out after graduating. However, Gluckman said that’snot the case.

“We talk about it a lot in my class and it seems likeeveryone’s really motivated. We understand that it’ssomething we all may have to do for our country,” hesaid.

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