Rutgers NROTC seniors receive Navy ship selections
Six graduating seniors in the Navy Reserve Officer Training Corps program will soon relocate to their first bases after having received their ship selection.
The Rutgers NROTC program is among the newest in the nation and in New Jersey, having been started in 2012, said Midshipman 3/C Peter Lu.
“The greatest part about this is since we started back in 2012, this is going to be our first graduating class who will ever get the commission from Rutgers University and from the ROTC unit,” said Lu, a School of Arts and Sciences sophomore. “So it’s a really big deal for us this year.”
The rising ensigns, whose names were not disclosed, will be stationed in Japan and three different U.S. states, Lu said. Another will join the submarine corps, with the final senior joining the U.S. Marine Corps.
Most of the midshipmen received their first-choice stations, meaning they will go to the base or craft they requested as students.
Four of the midshipmen will be located on amphibious transport docks as well as two different destroyers.
“Ship selection is a very big deal for NROTC programs, and also just commissioning in general,” Lu said. “It’s the first ship that every senior officer is going to be going to for their first tour of duty.”
The U.S. Marine will be one of the first from Rutgers, Lu said.
“We haven’t had (an NROTC unit) in almost 30 years,” he said. “Basically what our program does is prepare college students ready for … military service in the (U.S.) Navy, training future leaders (as) officers for both Marines and Navy officers.”
The students will also be competing in the Military Excellence Competition on April 23, hosted by the Villanova Naval ROTC Battalion at Villanova University in Pennsylvania. The competition consists of four categories— drill, athletics, combat skills and a basketball tournament.
Several schools will compete, Lu said. Combat skills include a 500 meter swim, shooting exercises, carrying “injured” people on stretchers, running and other physical activities.
“It’s really a big deal that especially for us this year, since there’s going to be a lot of us competing in it,” he said.
The midshipmen will commission on Monday, May 16.
“(They are) really great candidates,” he said.
Nikhilesh De is a School of Engineering junior. He is the news editor for The Daily Targum. Follow him on Twitter @nikhileshde for more.
Susmita Paruchuri is a School of Arts and Sciences junior majoring in mathematics and journalism and media studies. She is the design editor for The Daily Targum. Follow her on Twitter @susmitapar for more.