Military Training - KTRE.com | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

11/18/07 - Nacogdoches

Military Training

by Christa Lollis

Walking down muddy streets, hiding behind bushes and trying to find the Governor of a Taliban ruled area, it's not what you would expect to find in Nacogdoches but the SFA ROTC was doing just that this morning. "It's a practical mission what we did. We were training for things that could possibly and have happened in Afghanistan and Iraq. Towns become compromised by the enemy and you have to figure out who your loyalties lie with," ROTC Junior, Ryan Tompkins said. 

These students are learning the skills they'll need if the get commisioned upon graduation. They learn basic military techniques and leadership skills. "We need good leaders for any war zone whether it be Afghanistan, Iraq, or one's to come and this is a great leadership building opportunity that you don't get in any other class or any other place," Tompkins told KTRE. That's why they enjoy it so much. They know the skills they're learning now will ensure they succeed later. "I think it gives you leadership experience and if I go to apply for a job after I get out of the army and they see that I've been in the army, that kind of brings leadership and that I know how to work with people," ROTC student, Julie Ford said. 

It's not all fun and games. Today they were put in real life situations to teach them and for Julie it's about proving to herself what she's made of. "Rucking around with these big ruck sacks and running around and shooting and dealing with people, I think for me, I learn my goals and my limits and how far I can push myself and how I work. So I think it's more personal for me," she said. 

For Ryan, it's personal too, and it's something he's been dreaming about since he was a boy. "I've always wanted to do it. My brother joined the army when I was three or four and he sent me back some camo BDU's when I was young and I never stopped. I just wore them all the time and played army in the backyard and now I can play it for real," he told us. That's how the rest of them seem to feel too. They're ready and eager to do their part to protect america.

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