NJROTC cadets go to mini boot camp

Chris Duran

This January, students in the JROTC program had the opportunity to travel to Parris Island, South Carolina for a mini Marine Corps boot camp experience. Upon their arrival at the historic military base, students were greeted by grand gates and then introduced to their Drill Instructor for the weekend, SGT Benton. He wasted no time and had them sprint off the bus to retrieve their items as quickly as possible. 

Curtis students, both boys and girls, were brought to their quarters in the barracks and caught a first glimpse of their living space for the next three days. They were then informed that throughout the night each student would be on fire watch for an hour. As cadets for the next several days, they were not allowed to do anything unless commanded by their Drill Instructor. Every action was harshly scrutinized by Sergeant Benton, and if something wasn’t up to his standards, the cadets would be forced to do some form of Physical Training. 

The second day of the trip was focused on the physical strength that it takes to be a member of the Marine Corps. The cadet experience included running, push-ups, sit-ups, and an obstacle. Before leaving, they were surprised with a crash course on the Marine Corps Martial Arts Program (MCMAP). 

Throughout their trip, certain calls from the Drill Instructor signified specific actions and the cadets were expected to respond in turn. Marching was an essential component to the their stay because it was an effective way to keep every student in order 

The third and final day was a day to commemorate the recruits’ graduation. The cadets dressed in proper uniform and were able to experience what it was like for the Marine Corps recruits to become a part of something greater. The final day was also an exclusive opportunity to ask the Drill Instructor questions that the cadets had accumulated over the course of their time at Parris Island.