CAMP ZAMA, Japan (Oct. 7, 2019) -- When students at Zama Middle High School arrive in Junior Reserve Officers' Training Corps classes, one of the first items they learn is the U.S. Army JROTC Cadet Creed.

In fact, retired Lt. Col. Douglas Fields, the program's senior instructor, told the audience at a promotion ceremony at the school Oct. 3 that the cadets memorize the creed, and moments later, they demonstrated it by loudly reciting it as a group.

Among the creed's nine lines is one that reads, "I will always practice good citizenship and patriotism," and Cadet Lt. Col. Maxwell Orlosky, standing at the front of the Trojan Battalion formation as commander, told the audience that not only do the cadets look forward to the rest of the school year, "We will do our best to be better citizens."

In all, 21 cadets received promotions during the ceremony, and cadets who hold special positions of responsibility this year received recognition, said retired Sgt. Maj. Danny Davis, Army JROTC instructor at the school.

Cadet Master Sgt. Jaden Bouldin-Miller, a sophomore who received a promotion from cadet sergeant first class, said he has been in the program for two years and believes the program truly does make students better citizens--just like the creed states.

"It actually motivates you a lot," Bouldin-Miller said. "It's a great program."

Cadet Master Sgt. Queen Thomas, a sophomore, said she worked really hard to receive her promotion from sergeant to master sergeant.

"It feels really great to get promoted because I feel like I have a higher level of responsibility and I've been doing the correct things so far," Thomas said.

Thomas said that to get promoted she had to make sure she followed all the regulations and rules, but for her, that was a pleasure.

"I like a lot of precision, so I like the rules and regulations," Thomas said.

Bouldin-Miller said last year he acted as an assistant S3, helping with battalion operational planning and training, but now he is the actual S3 for the battalion and looks forward to tackling the job.

In the meantime, the promotion felt great, Bouldin-Miller said.

"I'm glad to be up in the ranks, [and I'm] hoping to make officer," Bouldin-Miller said.

Fields told the audience that he and Davis make sure the cadets not only know the creed, but that they also lead by example.

"They always know and hear from both Sgt. Maj. Davis and myself that someone is always watching them--how they conduct themselves, in and out the JROTC classroom, whether it's on the court, the football field or even in a mathematics class," Fields said.

The creed helps show cadets what that example looks like, Fields said.

"The cadets will always conduct themselves to bring credit to their families, their country, the school and the corps of cadets," Fields said. "This is their oath … they know that they're all leaders and we treat them as such, because these cadets truly are the future of the United States of America."