By Kerry Steinhofer
At Centre College’s 195 Commencement ceremonies, Josiah Farley ’18 (Lexington, Kentucky), Austin Glang ’18 (Fayetteville, Georgia) and Bradley Sampson ’18 (Durham, North Carolina) not only received bachelor degrees from the College but also graduated from the Reserve Officers Training Corps (ROTC) program.
Centre students may participate in the ROTC programs of either the U.S. Army or U.S. Air Force through a partnership with the University of Kentucky. Two-year and four-year programs are available, and most courses are offered on the University of Kentucky campus. Winners of competitive three-and four-year ROTC scholarships receive, in addition to their support from the Army or Air Force, room and board coverage for the period of the ROTC experience. Students may be eligible for additional scholarships or financial aid.
Farley, who recently graduated with a bachelor of science degree in biology, will be joining the Army Reserves and plans to attend physical therapy school.
“ROTC has been a great experience,” Farley said. “The program has taught me a lot about leadership and has added rigor and challenges to my Centre career that most students never get to experience. This has allowed me to grow as a student and a person.”
Glang, who graduated with a degree in economics and finance and philosophy, will take the summer to spend time with friends and family and studying for the Graduate Record Examinations (GRE) before entering active duty in September.
He will report to Fort Sill, Oklahoma, by January 2019 for the Field Artillery Basic Officer Leadership Course (BOLC).
BOLC is an 18-week program for newly commissioned Army field artillery officers, teaching the basics of gunnery and fire support, as well as how to lead a field artillery platoon.
After completing the course, Glang will be stationed at Fort Stewart, Georgia, where he’s been assigned to an artillery battalion within the third infantry division.
“ROTC is about developing officers with character, presence and intellect, who are competent in leadership, developing others and achieving results,” he said. “I think there is a lot of complementary overlap between how Centre develops its students over four years and how ROTC develops cadets.
“I came to Centre because I value a well-rounded liberal arts education, but I also wanted a chance to serve as an officer in the United States Army and to participate in a program intensely focused on developing leadership,” he continued.
Graduating with a bachelor of arts degree in international studies, Sampson will be a second lieutenant officer in the United States Army in the Quartermaster Corps.
“I believe that the ROTC program gave me more confidence to pursue challenges and overcome obstacles,” Sampson said. “I was able to get the opportunity to go abroad through an ROTC summer course, and I also had the privilege to work with other cadets from all walks of life from around the country.
“ROTC has certainly broadened my horizons and my perspective,” he concluded.
Major General Kirk F. Vollmecke ’84 was a guest at the commissioning ceremony. He was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant in May 1984, as a distinguished military graduate. He is currently the program executive officer for intelligence, electronic warfare and sensors at Aberdeen Proving Ground in Maryland.