ROTC hosts shoot-‘em-up

Nicole Gennarelli

A welcome-back paintball event took place at the Ravenna National Guard Training Area. It allowed new members to interact with others who have been in the program for a while.

“The point of this is to get the cadets out and get them into the elements here in Ravenna,” Cadet Johannes Benninghoff, a senior justice studies major, said. “It’s just to have some fun playing paintball, nothing too technical.”

This event usually happens once a year in the fall for freshmen and sophomores to help them become familiar with battle elements and moving on the terrain. Juniors are invited while the seniors mainly supervise the event.

“If it was a formal event, we would all be in uniform,” Benninghoff said. “This is just show up in whatever, shoot people and get to know them at the same time.”

Cadet Gregory Mayo, a sophomore computer science major, said this is his second year participating in the paintball event.

They play Capture the Flag and a last-man-standing-style game. The last-man-standing game between teams has no real ending time; it all depends on what happens. Everyone can just run out and get hit or they can sit back and wait it out.

“Honestly, today’s been great,” Mayo said. “It’s all been fun. We have two teams with about 25 people each. We get into formation, figure out what were going to do and then execute that plan.”

Mayo said this event is not only for fun, but to work on battle drills and teamwork. It helps cadets improve on leadership skills and teaches them how to take lead in certain situations.

“We do some team-based battles,” Cadet Adam Holliday, a senior political science major, said. “Sometimes we do class versus class, or just some Capture the Flag. We try and split the teams up evenly with people you may or may not know.”

In the fall they have a field training exercise that they do in association with a few other schools that is more organized. They also do land navigation, which is finding points in the middle of the woods with a compass and a map.

“We try and get out here when we can,” Holliday said. “For us, it is good training and the best place we have to get everyone together to work as a team.”

Cadet Zachary Macek, a junior political science major, said the day really helps build friendship with everybody.

Members from the ROTC sister schools Youngstown State University and the University of Mount Union attended as well.

“The schools don’t really get to see each other too much,” Macek said. “It’s really to integrate the freshman and second year students into the program.”

Charles Boylen, a freshman exploratory major, is new to ROTC, but thought the event was a great experience.

“This is all new for me,” Boylen said. “We’re pretty much just having fun, shooting each other up with paint balls.”

Contact Nicole Gennarelli at [email protected].