Contact: Mattie Majors
Some of the country’s most promising military leaders are preparing for their future with an education at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. Detroit Public Schools JROTC cadets got to spend some time at that most prestigious of schools to see what being a West Point cadet is really like.
Like a West Point education, the opportunity to even visit the school is not just handed out. Each JROTC cadet has to be worthy of it. Only cadets in their sophomore or junior year in high school who; carry a minimum of a 3.0 GPA; are college-bound; exhibit attributes of leadership, fitness and commitment to academics; and are interested in becoming an Army officer have any chance of being chosen. A total of 36 Cadets were selected from the 25 JROTC programs in the district. They spent 2 full days on the West Point campus immersed in the 106 year history of the Academy and student life. For those selected, it was an experience they will never forget.
“It was unbelievable. West Point not only challenges your physical strength, but your mental and spiritual prowess. Even though this school is extremely difficult and challenging the payoffs are greater than the sacrifices made to attain them. I want to come back as a student,” said Antonio Marquez from Western International High School. Stephan Bradley from Renaissance added, “The amount of effort that is put in is what comes out. There are always fellow cadets who are willing to help. Ultimately, West Point is very demanding but the academy equips each cadet with the knowledge and skills that prepare them well. It brings credit and merit to your name.”
JROTC cadets pay nothing for the trip which is sponsored annually by the District’s Department of Military Science. It exposes DPS cadets to the opportunities at West Point so along with the fun times on campus they spend time in briefings about admission requirements and what it takes to become a West Point military officer.
The Detroit Public Schools currently has a West Point connection. Two 2007 graduates are attending the West Point Prep Academy. They are Sherrill Williams from Cooley and Dexter Booze from Renaissance. Beginning in September of this year, they’ll be sophomores also known as Cows. In September of ’09 when they become juniors they will have earned the title of Yuks. The tradition lives on!
For information about enrollment, call 313-873-7098 or visit our website at www.detroitk12.org