Army ROTC cadets compete in German Armed Forces Proficiency Test

Mary Booth

Ten cadets from the Army ROTC were selected to compete in the annual German Armed Forces Proficiency Test (GAFPT) at the University of Indiana during the first weekend of March.

The German Armed Forces Proficiency Test is a culmination of events where cadets compete in their physical and intellectual abilities, said Adam Barnard, freshman business management major and cadet in the Army ROTC.       

“It was a piece of what the German army has to do as a part of the standards in their army. Almost like their version of a physical fitness test,” Barnard said. “The sergeant major of the German army was there to enforce their military’s standards.”

Barnard said that just attending the competition was a huge accomplishment for the cadets in the Army ROTC.

“Not everyone gets to do it. We only took ten cadets down from Kent State, YSU and Mount Union combined,” Barnard said. “By going you get a chance to set yourself a part from the other cadets.”

There was a ceremony at the end of the competition and the cadets were presented with gold, silver or bronze medals, Barnard said. He said they were awarded based on each cadet’s individual performance in all of the events.

“They called us up by school and then announced your name,” Barnard said. “Then the German sergeant major put the medal in the palm of his hand and he shook your hand.”

Barnard received a gold medal after competing in the GAFPT.

Jacob Klauer, sophomore criminology and justice major and Army ROTC cadet, said that in order to be considered for the GAFPT the cadets had to partake in tryouts.

“We had tryouts. We did physical events beforehand to see who was guaranteed to get a better score,” Klauer said. “Then they selected the top ten cadets based off that.”

While at the competition, Klauer said the cadets were tested on many physical activities. He said they had to take a written test too.

“We had to do running, swimming and shooting,” Klauer said. “We had to take a combat life savings test and know how to put on a chemical warfare suit as fast as possible.”

Klauer also received a gold medal after competing in the GAFPT.

Kevin Severino, junior applied engineering major and Army ROTC cadet, said the GAFPT is important because it’s a way for the German and American armies to converse with one another.

“It is the lowest basic training that the Germans have to do in their military and since we are allies, in order to get us to work with them more they let us do this test,” Severino said. “It helps the Germans not only trust us, but it also lets us trust them. And we respect them more because it’s not an easy test.”

Severino said the competition is a great way to gain the German army’s respect not only as soldiers, but as Americans too.

The medals received at the GAFPT, Severino said, are some of the only medals the cadets can continue to wear after they become officers.

“We get all kinds of medals as cadets and after you commission you aren’t able to wear them anymore,” he said. “The badge from this competition is one that you will always be able to wear on your uniform, which is what makes it so special.”

Severino received a silver medal after competing in the GAFPT.

The Kent State Army ROTC received a total of seven medals at the GAFPT: four gold and three silver.

For more information about the GAFPT go to

Contact Mary Booth at [email protected].