Senior Carmen Hamilton Says Farewell to JROTC


Senior Carmen Hamilton contemplates the emotions of her last year of high school.

Jessica Smith, Staff Writer

Tears being shed, memories being made, and the last goodbyes spoken, the seniors this year bid farewell to the school and the extracurriculars that have become a part of who they are.

Senior Carmen Hamilton prepares to say goodbye to the JROTC Program this year, and she has taken the time to reflect on the four years that she has been a part of a team that has become more like family.

Looking back into her first year, Hamilton claims to have taken the class only to receive an easy grade. Once she entered JROTC she found out that some of her friends had enrolled also, which  encouraged her to stick with it.

Hamilton soon realized that the class provides young people with leadership skills that they value for the rest of their lives. She loved the class, and she kept taking it every year. Hamilton says, “I have learned so much from being a part of this program and from the people that are in it.”

Hamilton claims, “The people are my favorite part of ROTC because there is a variety of personalities within the class and everyone has something in common with someone else.”

She has been a part of this program for 4 years with this year being her fourth and final. She has served on staff twice in two different positions. The first one was the S4, which is the Supplies and Logistics Officer within the battalion.

Hamilton says, “ I liked this position, but I love the position that I am at now.” The position that she currently serves as the S7, which is the Service Learning Team Leader. This team chooses what the ROTC battalion does as a community service project during the present school year.

Carmen states that she likes being in the staff positions because “they allow me to become more responsible because I have a task that I have to complete.”

Carmen believes that JROTC can teach several things that will be useful in life; however, she says, “Time management, leadership skills, and learning how to come out of your comfort zone are the most important.” She feels this way because it will allow students to be a better student or person in the long run especially if they know what they are doing. She thinks that managing time is important because it makes students responsible.

Hamilton also says that ROTC has taught her how to better work with people because she is always having to get other opinions from someone else, and she is always a part of a team no matter what she might be doing.

As a senior this year, she wants to let others know, “Come in with an open mindset and be yourself. Get involved and do not judge the program because of the uniform, says Carmen.” She also wanted them to know that the things they  might learn through this program are beneficial to life and their future.

Hamilton hopes to have a successful future and that this program stays alive. Now as she and several other seniors prepare to make their way across the stage in May, she realizes how much JROTC and other things have impacted her life. Even though it is a sad but sweet moment, she cannot wait to move into the next phase of her life, and she hopes to leave her mark on Pelahatchie High School and the JROTC Program.