Many students on campus take part in numerous activities outside of their academics,such as community service, arts, and athletics. But what most students don’t know is that there isa small group of students on campus that participate in the Reserve Officers' Training Corps, orROTC, in addition to their academic, athletic, and social lives at Hamilton. The ROTC are agroup of college-based officer training programs for training commissioned officers of theUnited States Armed Forces. It is offered at over 1,700 colleges and universities across theUnited States, and ROTC students attend college like other students, but also receive basicmilitary training and officer training for their chosen branch of service through the ROTC unit ator nearby the college.
Many of these students also receive merit based scholarships in return forservice to our country. Because there is no ROTC program actually on campus at Hamilton, it istypical of the students in the program to travel to surrounding universities to complete theirtraining. For example, Katie Tenefrancia, a junior on campus and one of the students a part ofROTC, travels to Syracuse University at least once a week as part of her ROTC training.
Additionally, she goes to Utica College 4 days a week for physical training, 1 weekend trainingat Ft. Drum per semester, and in the summer she travel to Ft. Knox, KY for Advanced Camp.Tenefrancia, although very passionate about her participation in ROTC, expressed that”balancing ROTC with my athletic and academic obligations is definitely challenging becausemany of my assignments for ROTC require long hours or a lot of time away from Hamiltonworking with other cadets.” She decided, though, as many others do, that she wanted to pursueROTC because she has “always wanted to serve my country and want to pursue a career thatconstantly challenges me. Military service also runs in my family and ROTC was an importantconsideration for my college decision.” Other students on campus, though, are very surprisedwhen they hear that there are students a part of ROTC. Tenefrancia included her perspective andexplained that “usually other students are pretty surprised to find out that we even have an ROTCprogram that students can take part in.
” She insisted, though, that “while I have experienced verymixed reactions across the community, my teammates and coaches are extremely supportivewhich really helps me balance ROTC while in soccer season.” After graduating college, manystudents in the ROTC program immediately go on to serve in the military for numerous years, asTenefrancia will also do after graduating in May 2019.The Hamilton community should be incredibly proud of these students in the ROTCprogram. Thank for your service and we look forward to seeing everything you will accomplish!