LDRSHIP–The JROTC Leadership Program


The Battalion Commander of JROTC Cadet Lieutenant Colonel Mondena Maycong. Standing in front of the JROTC banner.

Mackenzy Oviedo, Journalist

   JROTC is not simply the military. It doesn’t necessarily promote the military. JROTC promotes leadership, responsibility, and encourages you to believe in yourself. The cadets learn the LDRSHIP ACRONYM: Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Selfless Service, Honor, Integrity, and Personal Courage.

   What is leadership? Leadership is the ability to influence, lead, or guide others so as to accomplish a mission in the manner desired. Everyone in leadership who has high rank shows cadets how to do things the right way, such as marching the right way.   

The tradition of training college students for the military leadership began in 1819 at what is now Norwich University in Northfield, Vermont. The ROTC program we know today, however, is a result of the National Defense Act of 1916. The National Defense Act brought the states militias more under federal control and gave the president authority, in case of war or national emergency, to mobilize the National Guard for the duration of the emergency. 

The purpose of JROTC is to shape students to become better citizens. The motto for JROTC at Pahrump Valley High School is “To Motivate Young People to be Better Citizens.” 

Some of the famous soldiers and people who were in JROTC are Sam Walton, James Earl Jones, and Samuel Alito. 

Sam Walton was the richest man in America. He is best known for starting Wal-Mart. He spent approximately 18 months with J.C. Penny resigned in 1942 in anticipation of being inducted into the military for World War II. Soon afterwards, Walton joined the U.S. Army Intelligence Corps, supervising security at aircraft plants and prisoner of war camps. 

James Earl Jones is an American actor and has been described as “one of America’s most distinguished and versatile actors and one of the greatest actors in American History” by Kolumn Magazine, a magazine that celebrates minority actors. Some of the movies he starred in was Star Wars, The Lion King, and Sandlot

After graduating from university, Jones was recruited into the Army. The Korean War was gaining momentum so he fully expected to see combat. He was commissioned in 1953 and attended officers basic course and became a second lieutenant. 

Samuel Alito is an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States. He was on the Court of Appeals in 1990 and was nominated to become a Supreme Court by George W. Bush.  

Alito was drafted to serve in the Vietnam War on December 1, 1969. After graduation from law school, he served four months of active service from September to December of 1975. 

Alito served in the Army Reserve from 1972 until 1980, when he was honorably discharged with the rank of captain. 

Senior James Ratliff, the Executive Officer of PVHS’s JROTC, said, “JROTC, to me, is more like a family than anything else. We are like one giant family that works together.”

Senior James Ratliff, the Executive Officer of PVHS’s JROTC. Standing in front of the JROTC banner.

The JROTC is a family because we get to know each other. The cadets work together and communicate to keep the program going. Also, it teaches the cadets to believe in themselves. 

Cadets can earn their rank by staying after school, joining a special team, showing up for special events like drill meets, car washes, fundraisers, saying the creed, presenting flags, community service hours, and keeping grades up. There are lots of ways to be able to earn rank.

A Cadet Private Robert Smith, a freshman staying after school for special teams. Smith is doing homework during homework time.

There are 16 ranks and 6 of them are officers. Starting from the top of the list is:


Cadet Colonel, Cadet Lieutenant Colonel, Cadet Major, Cadet Captain, Cadet First Lieutenant, and Cadet Second Lieutenant.

      Enlisted Personnel: 

Cadet Master Sergeant, Cadet Sergeant First Class, Cadet Staff Sergeant, Cadet Sergeant, Cadet Corporal, Cadet Private First Class, and Cadet Private.

Senior Modena Maycong, the Battalion Command of PVHS’s JROTC, said, “I want to work on more communication, improve in marching, and perform better in drill meets this year than last year.”

 JROTC is an educational and motivational program to help students become better citizens in the community along with giving them an option to join any branch of the military. The class does not force students to join. It is an opportunity, not an option.