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Click HERE for our latest Newsletter! (2020 Feb. )

A note from our PMS, LTC Brian Ferguson

What an amazing semester we had this fall.  For those who have been following us on social media, you know it’s been busy.  For those who haven’t been, keep reading and checking out the pictures in this issue of the Wolfpack Newsletter.  The last newsletter we published came out just after Army Night at Progressive Field.  If you thought that was exciting, our cadets flew on a CH-47 this fall, spent a bone-chilling night in a patrol base, and competed in a rain-soaked brigade-wide Ranger Challenge competition.  By the end of the semester we had a fun-filled Dining In and our first commissioning of Mission Set 20. 


This October, cadets traveled to Washington, DC to run in the Army Ten Miler and to attend the Association of the United States Army’s (AUSA) Annual Meeting.  I would again like to thank GEN Ham (JCU ’76) for sponsoring our visit to the Annual Meeting.  The Annual Meeting is something of a family reunion as Soldiers come in from all around the world.  Our cadets met senior leaders and heard about the future of the Army where they will serve as officers.  In addition, the cadets visited the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, President Kennedy’s grave and the experienced the enormity of our honored heroes that have gone before us at the Arlington Cemetery. 


Next, we were off to Ranger Challenge followed by the fall FTX.  This year for the first time in recent memory, Ranger Challenge was conducted at the brigade level.  Your cadets competed against every university in our five-state brigade.  With determination and grit they put up with seemingly never ending rain and sore feet to complete all of the tasks with a respectful finish.  With a lot of the younger cadets on the team we have a deep bench that will continue to carry the proud tradition forward.  At the FTX, we traded Ranger Challenge rain, for late fall lower temperatures.  To all the light-fighters out there who have stood behind a tank to stay warm (me included), the same feeling can be had standing behind CH-47 turbines.  That was probably the warmest part of the weekend.   Despite the cold weather, we met all of our training objectives and every cadet learned many lessons in fieldcraft, patrolling, and what it truly means to persevere through obstacles. 


This December, MSG Achterberg and I met with the President and Provost of John Carroll University to plot our course for the future.  The department will begin to leverage university assets to help spread the word about the opportunities that service in the Army offers a college student both now and after graduation.  Our 100% job placement at graduation, certified fitness trainers, worldwide office locations, and comprehensive medical plans are the best in the industry.  MSG and I thought the meeting was very productive.  The university and ROTC goals align – to put servant leaders into the ranks of our Army.   


The pictures in the newsletter tell a thousand words, but if you really want to know how it all went, ask your cadets.  Their stories are much better than mine.  The Dining In proved that.  Hosted by the cadets from CWRU the annual event always seems to uncover a lot of humorous events from the organization. 


In December, we  commissioned 2LT Thomas Moesch into the Infantry.  The ceremony was held on the campus of Baldwin Wallace University with their President and Provost attending as well as over 40 of 2LT Moesch’s family and friends. Every 2LT should remember their commissioning and this ceremony created a lasting memory for all present.   


As we look to the spring we have a new cadet chain of command in place and many opportunities lay ahead both in the field and as we prepare for Cadet Summer Training 2020.  Commissioning in May is fast approaching.  We are moving ahead on the indoor range simulator for the basement of the ROTC building to better prepare cadets for camp and beyond.  While the costs are making a major impact to our annual operating budget, the reward of sending more capable cadets to camp and eventually to the Army is worth the sacrifice. 


Lastly, I want to publicly recognize Cadet John Selep.  CDT Selep was selected to represent our program at the George C. Marshall Conference this February at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.  The honor is unique because only the top cadet from each ROTC program in the nation attends this event.  CDT Selep distinguished himself in classroom, as the Ranger Challenge Platoon Leader, and will graduate as one of only two Distinguished Military Graduates from our program this year.  Join me in congratulating CDT Selep the next time you see him.


I was going to keep my comments short, but with so much going on, it is hard not to praise the hard work and effort shown by your cadets.    Thank you all for your continued and unwavering support of our various programs and initiatives.  I mean it when I say, this is your battalion and these are your cadets.  They represent all of us today and in the future when they will lead America’s sons and daughters.  To our alumni, thank you for sending in your pictures, stories, and most importantly a desire to connect with us.    


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