Roo Battalion Visits Texas A&M-Central Texas

KHS JROTC cadets worked on A&M obstacle course
By: Todd Martin
The life of a college student can be a balancing act – some reading and writing, going to class, social interaction and even scaling walls and climbing ropes.
A group of 44 Killeen High School Junior ROTC cadets visited the Texas A&M University-Central Texas and Central Texas College campuses Wednesday to see a little of all of it.
They began at Texas A&M at the ROTC obstacle course, where university ROTC students and professors walked them through some of the physical challenges.
Many of the high school cadets chose to try their strength on obstacles, including climbing walls and a rope climb.
They also received orientation from university instructors and administrators about the degree plans available at the Killeen campus.
Later in the day, the cadets moved on to CTC for another campus tour and tried out an orienteering course.
Military Science Assistant Professor Maj. Kyle Surridge said the aim of the day was to give the students an overall look at what a university education entails.
Students asked questions about admission and expenses and the range of academic offerings at the local college and university.
The JROTC leaders appreciated the chance to get off their own high school campus to peak into the college life.
Killeen High School senior Ayla Johnson, the battalion commander already has plans to attend an out-of-state university and to continue to law school.
Senior Hatem Muhammad, the command sergeant major for the JROTC unit plans to go to Texas A&M University in College Station and follow the ROTC path into the Army to become a registered nurse.
Both students appreciated the chance to ask questions about their next step.
“Today we’re introducing cadets to college life,” said Johnson. “This is also a good time to get together and bond with all the companies. A lot of students might have the same life track.”
“So far it looks familiar like other courses we’ve seen,” she said. “I like the campus here. The soldiers are nice. We can see how close they are together.”
The high school students found out that ROTC students at Texas A&M University-Central Texas work on the obstacle course three times a week.
“We’re seeing a day in the life of an ROTC student,” said Muhammad. “I hope the cadets see that in college you are an adult with more freedom and challenges.”
The two high school leaders said JROTC has been a valuable way to learn leadership skills.
“JROTC changed my perspective,” said Muhammad. “I learned to believe in myself and the importance of showing good character.”