ROTC cadet experiences life in Korea
August 1, 2013
OSAN AIR BASE -- The reserve officer training corps is an important facet of leadership development within the U.S. military that starts at the college level and trains students to lead Soldiers. The education doesn't stop at book-smarts and formation rehearsals, though.
Cadet Paris Scott, an ROTC cadet from The Citadel Military College of South Carolina, trained alongside the Soldiers of Battery C, 6th Battalion, 52nd Air Defense Artillery Regiment, here, from July 14--August 10.
The three-week training course provided a hands-on experience at the level of a second lieutenant in the air defense artillery branch, said Scott.
"It's been going pretty smoothly," she said. "I came here to learn what it is like to be a leader."
While with the "Iron Horse" battalion, Scott conducted convoy briefings, endured gas chamber training and has visited Seoul.
Scott said that working in Korea has been interesting as it is both a beautiful and high-tech country.
Soon, Scott will be serving as a newly commissioned officer, having earned her position within the ranks of leadership.
"I have ten months of my senior year left and I will be commissioned after I graduate," said Scott. "I had a bunch of role models who went before me that inspired me to join ROTC in college."
Cadets complete four years of training, said 2nd Lt. Alexandra Budge, a fire control platoon leader with Battery C and Scott's sponsor. The first three years are in preparation for the Leaders Development and Assessment and the fourth year the senior cadets act as mentors to younger cadets.
"As a sponsor, I show her the ropes and introduce her to life as a lieutenant and as a platoon leader," said Budge. "I show her the day-to-day functioning of the battery and how things run, a lot of stuff they're not exposed to as a cadet."
College ROTC programs allow people interested in the military to experience it while attending college with a greater level of freedom, said Budge. This freedom also requires a development of self-motivation, self-reliance, time management and other important skills to stay on top of grades and complete all assignments to meet commissioning requirements.
"I loved it," said Budge. "It was amazing. Anyone interested should do it."
While pursuing a full career in the Army hasn't been decided, Scott's main goal is to learn as much as she can during her service as an officer. After completion of her time here she will return to the Citadel to complete her training.