Veteran’s Day is a time to show our gratitude for the outstanding men and women who have served and are currently serving our great nation.
And every day, but particularly this Friday, we are reminded that exceptional soldiers and airmen are not made overnight. In fact, future leaders in our military are being developed right here on our campus through the Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC).
The Army ROTC Wildcat Battalion and Air Force ROTC Detachment 290 Flying Wildcats, supported by the College of Arts and Sciences, have trained and commissioned hundreds of officers during their time on campus. As you walk across our campus, you often see these bright young students donning their respective uniforms.
UK is proud to contribute to the academic components of their training.
Students who participate in the ROTC program are known as “cadets.” On top of their course work mandated by the university, they participate in additional courses including military history, leadership training, and physical training.
A normal day in a cadet’s schedule includes getting up at 5:30 a.m., participating in Physical Training (a KHP or AFS course), attending their classes for their major, and then attending a Leadership Laboratory or a meeting for ROTC.
Earning a bachelor’s degree is a requirement for commissioning, but the degree a cadet earns often serves as the foundation of knowledge for his or her military career. For example, a Civil Engineering major will often become a Civil Engineer for the Army or Air Force. For that reason, the ROTC programs hold cadets to high academic standards.
Cadets are not only future military leaders, but also, presently, leaders in the classroom.
Our university partnerships with the exceptional Air Force and Army ROTC programs consistently attract and retain high caliber students. We are honored to have an opportunity to play a role in cultivating the newest second lieutenants each year to commission into the world’s greatest military.
At the same time, we are grateful for opportunities to serve current veterans on our campus as well.
UK has, for the last several years, been ranked highly by Military Times magazine for our institution's support of and dedication to military veterans. The Veterans Resource Center was established, and recently significantly renovated, to provide veterans with assistance in transitioning to college life. These services focus on veterans across the span of experience, whether a veteran is entering college for the first time, transferring from another school, or returning after a deployment. As a tangible display of our commitment and gratitude, we are proud to announce the UK will be the first institution of higher education in the U.S. to sponsor an Honor Flight.
The mission of Honor Flight is to ensure veterans get to see their memorials in Washington D.C. Flighrs are 100 percent privately funded, to provide a cost-free experience for the veteran. Learn more about this exciting initiative here: www.uky.edu/honorflight.
Please join me in thanking our UK veterans for their commitment to our country and our UK community.
They are reminders of our most fundamental purpose as an institution: to positively impact those we serve. We look forward to celebrating Veterans Day.
Tim Tracy @UKYProvost #seeblue #seeservice