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ROTC at Georgetown Picked as America’s Most Outstanding

March 2, 2012 – Georgetown’s Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) programs have received the Outstanding ROTC Unit Award for the 2010-2011 school year.

The Order of the Founders and Patriots of America picked Georgetown over 272 other senior ROTC programs around the country.

The order is a lineage society that traces its roots back to the first colonists and the U.S. Army Cadet Command.

Cadets’ Efforts

The award is given based on a unit’s battalion mission, rates of retention and progression, performance and individual cadet rankings.

“It was the great efforts of the individual cadets,” says Col. Gregory Bendewald, professor of military science, when asked why he thinks Georgetown got the award. “Their hard work, dedication and commitment enabled them to surpass all of our goals and objectives, along with the special effort of our [ROTC leaders] to prepare them and make this the best program in the nation.”

The Order stated in a press release that the Outstanding ROTC Award has been presented for at least the past 50 years and is a “highly competitive award.”

Long History

The Hoya Battalion, which began in the 1830s, is made up of more than 100 male and female cadets from Georgetown, American, George Washington and Catholic universities.

As part of the official Army ROTC since 1918, the battalion has commissioned more than 4,000 men and women as officers in the Army.

“Our program contains a diverse amount of individuals with enormous talents,” says Sean Freeh (SFS’12), battalion commander. “[And] It feels great to know that our ROTC program is being nationally recognized for its hard work and dedication.”

Top of Their Game

At Georgetown contracted Battalion cadets take military science classes and participate in labs and physical training to prepare them for active duty or to serve in the Army Reserves or the National Guard after graduation.

Students who are unsure if they want to serve can still participate in the program and audit the classes without a contracted commitment up until their junior year, but that makes them ineligible for program scholarships.

In order to be selected for Georgetown’s ROTC program, cadets must prove themselves as strong scholars, athletes and leaders in their communities, Bendewald says.

“They have to be at the absolute top of their game,” he says.