ROTC program provides skills for future

Kent State reserve officers training corps newest commander, Lt. Col. Daniel Finkelstein, teaches an Air Force ROTC class, Thursday, Jan. 30, 2014, in Terrace Hall.

Graham Smith

Kent State reserve officers’ training corps’ newest commander, Lt. Col. Daniel Finkelstein, teaches an Air Force ROTC class, Thursday, Jan. 30, 2014, in Terrace Hall.

Mary Booth

The ROTC program, which has existed for more than 60 years, offers a wide range of benefits for students enrolled. Those in charge do whatever they can to mold the best men and women for the armed forces.

“It’s all about the cadets. This entire program is centered around them,” said Major Aaron Mix assistant professor of military science, and the executive officer of the Army ROTC program at Kent. “They are students here, so because of that you have to manage that time for them and respect their requirements so they will get what they need out of the program.”

Mix said they are always looking for ways to improve the program so they can provide the students with the most beneficial experience possible.

“We are constantly trying to challenge the cadets, in regards to building character and leadership and just being a more well rounded citizen,” Mix said.

The Kent ROTC website describes the program as an officer-training program that is based directly out of college. It is designed to prepare young adults for a successful future in any career field by providing them with incomparable leadership training. The experience and knowledge gained throughout each year of college will give students the foundation needed to become an officer in the Army or Air Force.

Cadet Bradley Perkins, senior educational studies major and a senior in the Army ROTC program, joined directly out of high school. He is currently in charge of coordinating underclassman’s physical fitness and enforcing the dress code.

“It will give you more than you ever wanted,” Perkins said. “A job, discipline — it will really change your demeanor on life.”

Perkins said he is very thankful to have been in ROTC. He was able to travel to many places in the United States, meet incredible people and experience things he never thought possible.

Perkins explained how many of his friends, who have recently graduated, are still unemployed. Perkins, however, will be receiving his dream job directly upon graduation.

“Back in November I found out my branch: I’m going infantry. I wanted that for the longest time,” Perkins said. By joining the ROTC program, Perkins said he has had many great experiences and found a job that he loves. Other students join ROTC because it offers what many programs do not: an opportunity to receive a degree and serve in the military.

Cadet Adam Barnard, a freshman in the Army ROTC, joined the program his first semester at Kent. He said there is no other program that compares to ROTC. Not only can someone become an officer in the military, but they are able to go to college and get an education too.

“I’ve always wanted to serve my country in some way and I also wanted to go to college,” he said. “So I got the best of both worlds by joining ROTC.”

The ROTC program at Kent continues to expand and become more beneficial to the students involved. With such a wide range of success over the last 60 years, it seems that ROTC will continue to be around for many years to come. For more information about ROTC at Kent State University check out

Contact Mary Booth at [email protected].