Marist Student Appears on Wheel of Fortune

Screen Shot 2019-04-25 at 2.14.58 PMMost Americans can only dream of making it on a TV game show, but for Marist junior Caroline Fiske, that dream became a reality.

Earlier this year, Fiske was selected as one of 18 college students to fly to Los Angeles and be a contestant on her favorite game show, the “Wheel of Fortune.” The other 17 students represented various schools around the country, including Emerson College, Providence College, the University of Delaware, Drexel University, and the University of Alabama.

Fiske has been a fan of Wheel of Fortune her entire life, so getting this opportunity was an especially big deal for her.

“I have been watching Wheel of Fortune since I was a little girl. Being on the show has been a life long dream of mine. In fact, when I was a little girl and I used to wait for food at restaurants, I would play hangman on the menus and I would get my whole family involved,” said Fiske.

However, even a superfan like Fiske was caught off guard by parts of the experience.

“Despite how much and how often I would watch the show, it did not prepare me for the real experience. There is just so much going on all at once and you must remain calm, cool, and collected. There are all of these lights, sound cues, cameras, people watching you and your every move, and Pat Sajak [the host] standing less than a foot away from you.”

Speaking of Sajak, Fiske actually had a personal moment with the famous host that she will remember forever.

“The part that I will cherish for the rest of my life is when I made a mistake on one of the puzzles that I was about to solve and Pat Sajak pulled me to the side during one of the commercial breaks and he gave me some advice. He said to me, ‘don’t let that one little mistake get in your way, it happens to the best of us, just keep playing the game and focus on that.’”

Fiske bounced back from her mistake, solving puzzles such as “Vegetable Spring Rolls,” “Ducks and Geese,” and “Overlooking the Ocean.” She won $4,000 in cash as a result.

The episode aired on April 12th, and Fiske ended up walking away with a total of $10,400 in cash and prizes in addition to a trip to the Bahamas. Even though Fiske didn’t advance to the bonus round of win the million dollar prize, she had no regrets.

“I would not change anything about this experience. Even though I did not win, this whole experience has given me the confidence and persistence that I never knew I had. Because despite how much competition I had and how much pressure I was under during the whole filming process, I did not give up on myself and at the end of the day I did not let my nerves get the best of me.”

Surely Fiske was “fortunate” for her experience, as she deemed it “the best day of my life.”

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50 Years of Success at Marist: Alums share why HEOP Works

The Arthur O. Eve Higher Education Program (HEOP) works because it, “brings forth students of various ethnic backgrounds and provides them with a solid foundation to be successful” said Daniel Faison Marist HEOP alum class of ‘74.

Faison is a graduate from the first ever HEOP class at Marist College. Marist was one of the first 24 college institutions to adopt the HEOP program back in 1969. He is from Beacon, NY and graduated in ’74 with his bachelors of science with a concentration in Psychology.

Since its creation the HEOP program here at Marist has thrived and continued to bring forth successful students. According to the Director of HEOP, Iris Ruiz-Grech, “There have been a little over 450 graduates to date which includes first time students and transfers into Marist College HEOP.”

Faison believes in the success of the program because it provides, “a solid platform for individuals to learn and grow while in college.” Private college institutions that have HEOP programs are responsible for providing students with academic support, assistance in paying for their tuition, supplemental financial aid, and providing any additional funds needed to complete the student’s graduation requirements.

These are some of the reasons why HEOP students have been so successful over the years. Within this program students are given the resources for them to thrive and succeed over the course of their college career.

According to the director of HEOP, “21% of the HEOP students were named on the Dean’s List this year, some of them on both semesters.” In addition, of the 450 graduates that came through the program, “29% of the graduates did so with Latin Honors.”

Back in January the governor proposed budget cuts to educational programs statewide. Some of the programs included, “NYS Tuition Assistance Program (TAP), Enhanced Tuition Assistance Awards (ETA), Science and Technology Entry Program (STEP), Collegiate Science and Technology Entry Program (C-STEP), Liberty Partnership Programs (LPP) and the Foster Youth Care Success Initiative (FYCSI)” according to Associate Director Mary Rice.

With all of this success within the program, it’s questionable that the New York State governor would even consider cutting the HEOP programs budget. He proposed a 5% cut from the annual budget.

But in recent updates from the associate director of HEOP, the budget has been restored to level funding. Level funding means the budget has been restored to its original amount before the proposed cuts. Therefore the HEOP program can continue to enroll students this upcoming academic year and maintain its overall success.

“HEOP works because the people who work in HEOP at the core of their being believe in students” said Marisel Herrera HEOP graduate class of ’93.

 

 

 

Meaghan Roche’s Unshakeable Endgame

As a kid, Meaghan Roche wanted to be an author. She, unlike many millennial students, was a big reader, and hoped that someday, she would “be able to say [she] wrote a whole book that people wanted to read and would enjoy as much as I would.” While her desires have taken a slight turn since, she still loves the idea of writing something that is meaningful. “That much hasn’t changed.”

The Roche’s ties to the Hudson Valley have always kept Meaghan, now a senior communication student on track for a Spring graduation, relatively aware of Marist. “I’ve been familiar with the area my whole life… it holds a special place in my heart. I know what you’re thinking,” she says. “Really? Poughkeepsie? Yeah, I love it here.” It has been clear for some time that Meaghan belonged at Marist, specifically in the school’s Center for Sports Communication. Her love for the school came long before her enrollment.

“It was the first college I ever toured, and I first saw the “old” Marist,” she remembered. “The Marist before the dining hall ‘looked like Hogwarts” and the rotunda wasn’t nearly as impressive – back when I tagged along on my older brother’s college tours when I was just a freshman in high school. From that day on, I silently and selfishly hoped he wouldn’t choose to go to Marist because I wanted to go there and I didn’t want to go to the same college as him.”

After holding out hope on what was not an uncommon sentiment for a younger sibling, she got her wish. Even before arriving, Meaghan knew that this was her school. This was, as a matter of fact, her home. The opportunities were endless, as the old cliché goes, and Meaghan witnessed that firsthand, even before arriving.

“During my senior year [of high school], I got an email from Keith Strudler [the department’s former director] inviting me to come to one of the Center for Sports Communication’s Speaker Series events, featuring sportswriter Jeremy Schaap,” she said. Even though the event fell amidst a holiday break, Meaghan made the trip, needing to experience the environment. “Marist was already my number one school; there wasn’t much left that the campus itself needed to prove to me. But what stood out to me the most was how well spoken and interested the students were that asked questions of Schaap. I wanted to be one of them.”

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When Center Field first began publishing, Meaghan was immediately named Executive Editor. Whilst, at that time, not having a relationship aside from “fellow classmate” with co-founders Matt Rzodkiewicz and Marco Schaden, they quickly became some of her closest friends. As time went on, Meaghan continued to climb the ranks. She has since served as Deputy Editor-in-Chief, and will be the site’s EIC starting in January of 2019. It didn’t start out that way.

“I get an email from the department about Center Field, and I go to the first meeting and sign up for what I’m interested in, but I asked the kids who seemed to be in charge if they needed someone to be an editor. They didn’t really seem to have a solid answer for me,” she says, just citing a classic Marco moment. She wasn’t entirely sure, especially at the beginning, that this publication would go anywhere, nor that she’d be so heavily involved.

“A few weeks go by, and I hadn’t really heard anything, until one day I ran into Leander [Schaerlaeckens] on the way to class. He asked if I had gotten involved and I told him I had expressed interest in editing, I’m a proofreader for the writing center, I’m good at it, I like it,” she says. “He passes on my info; I get an email from Marco later that day asking me to come to their meeting. I walked in there thinking I would just help out with copyediting the stories. I walked out of there with the title “Executive Editor.” Two semesters later, the Center is my second home, and my Center Field co-editors are my second family.”

That second family has gotten Meaghan opportunities to work with Baseball Miracles and McMillan Publishing, just two of the high profile opportunities she hopes to garner experience from in her employment search. She’s a weird journalist, one that refuses to drink coffee (see her Twitter bio). But she’s a journalist nonetheless; one with the passion and authentic drive to find success wherever she may go.

Marist Basketball Manager Talks Experience So far

If you were to walk around the Marist College Main campus located in Poughkeepsie New York you would see many students in athletics attire with backpacks with their jersey number on it and what sport the student plays. But what you don’t see is who are the managers of the team

IMG_1578Sean McGee the 20-year-old Sophomore just conclude is second year as a manager for the Marist men’s basketball team and there many duties he must due as a manager for the Men’s Basketball team.

“My duties as a manger are that I have to film games and practices when they happen and after games conclude I have to make sure that both coaches get the game film” said McGee “Also I have to make sure that all the players have all their equipment”. Another duty that must McGee must do is making sure all the players and coaches food orders are in for when the team is on the road away.

.Also, in those two years McGee was part of two different coaching staffs in his freshman year he was part of Former head coach Mike Maker final season. McGee said regardless of the record that happen that he still really enjoyed the season and that he learned a lot under coach Maker. He recalls his best memory from that season “The best memory from that season was when we went down to Manahan after losing to them at home in overtime” said McGee “Ryan Funk hit a game winning three and the locker room was so intergenic and we knew that winning wasn’t a fluke.”

Now with his first year under new head coach John Dunne he reflects on the season. Under Dunne McGee says there were stressful times threw out the season especially when it came to traveling. But with Stressful times comes the positives the Men’s Basketball team won the Samson Bracket Championship in the Belfast Classic. With Marist winning the tournament Senior Guard Brian Parker was named the MVP of the tournament.

McGee is also happy with the culture that Dunne has brought in and that the staff he has brought in welcoming and he knows if he has any questions that he knows he can go to them with them.  he also reflects on what is like being part of the team and being a manger.

“You get to build these special bounds with the players they are like your second family” said McGee “As a manger we are seen as equal people as part of the team it makes us feel important to the program.” McGee later went on to say the it’s a learning experience you can like every day and see in practices in what they do and take away and gain valuable knowledge.

McGee is a 100% sure they he will return is junior year and be a manger once again and say that he might be getting more responsibility’s some include setting up practices with opposing teams when they go on the road this includes calling the Director of Men’s basketball operations and it would be vice versa.

When McGee is not with the basketball team or in class he spends time with his friends working on a brand-new music streaming app called Haven Music. “It will be a app that uses blockchain technology to give artist royalty payments instantaneously, eliminating a 6-12 month wait time for mere dollars” said McGee “We want to give artist more tools to be successful in the music streaming industry. McGee said that him and his friends thinks there is a problem with the music industry and they want to fix it.

 

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McGee and his partners after their bussiness meeting back in March

 

 

 

 

 

Marist Relocates Trees Before Dyson Addition

Marist College uproots and moves trees ahead of 2019 Dyson Renovation on campus green.

The week before Easter break, students noticed orange, plastic fencing around the Dyson Hall quad. The bright orange barriers enclosed a large area encompassing two oaks trees. This is the site of the new Dyson Hall addition coming in Fall of 2019.

Yellow bulldozers and back-hoes converted the quaint campus green into a construction site with unearthed soil littering the area. Machines dug around the two oak trees and landscapers bagged the tree’s roots similar to how a garden plant is transplanted.

Once the trees were bagged and tied together, giant forklifts had the impossible task of unearthing trees that have been growing for a decade. At one point during the extraction, the machine could not counter the weight of the tree, which in turn lifted the machine as oppose to the tree.

While most students are perplexed about the project, Justin Butwell of the Physical Plant office has been planning this project for a while.

“The oak trees that are being relocated were planted in 2011. They are in the area of the proposed Dyson Addition project, so we decided to relocate the to the area between Lavelle and O’Shea Halls, instead of cutting them down in the near future.”

When asked about the cost of this project, Butwell explained that he does not feel comfortable disclosing an exact amount but assures that relocating the trees are “a substantially less expensive” project than planting new trees of similar size.

The lengthy process of uprooting and moving trees make some students positive that the school is adopting environmentally friendly techniques. Matthew Pullman, class of 2022, says, “I am happy the trees are not just being chopped down, but they are moving them elsewhere.”

However, Butwell explains this is not a new process. Marist College has uprooted and moved trees before the migration of these two oak trees.

Despite the orange, temporary fencing surrounding the relocation project some could wonder if such machinery is safe on a college campus. Butwell assures that all safety precautions are being taken to insure the safety of students during the project.

But some students are indifferent of the whole matter. Freshman Julia Capparelli did not notice the relocation process, and says she does not look forward to the noise from the Dyson renovation.

Whereas other students considered the positive aspect of the Dyson renovation. “It is a good idea if it is going to make Dyson a better place,” sophomore Caitlin De Vita says before adding, “I think the ‘L’ shape is going to be weird for Dyson Hall and also the reduction of the campus green is kind of sad.”

The “L” Shape Vita is referring to is the future lay-out of Dyson Hall after the renovation is complete.

While these oak trees are being saved in time for Earth Day, there are still two other trees in the designated Dyson Addition site. There is no word on the future of either of the remaining trees.

Leaving Administration Provides Final Last Policies

The Marist College Student Government Association released a slew of new policies and resolutions to take effect within the next semester.

A center point of the administration ran by Ted Dolce ‘19 and Ankofa Billips ‘19 was to resolve and mend race issues on campus. With the new Assembly Resolution, they plan to do just that.

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Marist College Student Government Crest – Courtesy of github.com

While they have just been replaced by the incoming President and Vice President, Joe Sarci ‘20 and Roda Mohamed ‘21, they released these new policies and resolutions mere days before the 2019-2020 administration was sworn in.

The new policies attempt to regulate and fix a corrupt system that clubs and activities have had to struggle with for years; the flier system.

SGA’s report includes multiple ways the system will be fixed and make it more efficient, “SGA is working with Student Activities and Student Affairs to modify the current policy by placing kiosks/outdoor bulletin boards in student hubs such as the North End Dining Hall, Underpass, First Year Quad, Dyson Quad, and the Marketplace where members of the of Marist community would be able to place posters and flyers without a stamp,” the report said.

Students have always had to get the posters approved and then had to be put up for a mere week, or until their event, and the new policies are set to change that. The proposal also introduces the idea of being able to post a flier anonymously, a new concept to the Marist community.

“Anonymous postings that appear under a pseudonym or that do not include clear and unambiguous identifying information about the group or person responsible for them are allowed in designated areas only,” said the released report said.

This same proposal also outlines how organization, distant, or removed from the Marist campus will also be allowed to join the cork boards around campus.

In a lesser note, the SGA released report additionally plans to move their office from the third floor of the student center to the ground floor.

This will help curate a more authentic “student center” feel to the buildings name. SGA hopes to, “revitalizing the student center to be filled with student art, initiatives, and projects advances school spirit and pride along with student innovation,” as stated in the report.

Giving up their glass window clad office on the third floor, SGA will create a more authentic student center on the first floor, with students having easy access to them, as well as the lounge area. They hope this streamlines communication between students and the administration and gives students a place to go.

As previously mentioned the focal point of the administration has been mending racial issues on campus, and with a new resolution to the constitution, Dolce and Billips administration hope to do just that.

They hope that the resolution in the constitution doesn’t stay just within SGA, but is reflected holistically at the administrative level. “Thus the aforementioned condemnation language of this resolution shall be explicitly reflected in the Code of Conduct during its next revisionary period,” Assembly Resolution #1 said.

As final acts before their administration had ended, Dolce and Billips, as always, strive to make Marist a community that welcomes all and can last way past their administration.

 

Mike Napolitano: An Alumni in Music and in the Community

When someone thinks of the Music Department, the first image in their head might be the music heard or the instruments played. However, one may not immediately think of those who operate behind the scenes ensuring the smoothness of the program. One of these people is Mike Napolitano ’04, MA ’17, a Marist alumni who has worked with the department since his graduation.

Mike (who members of the music department call Mikey) grew up down the road from Marist in Wappingers Falls. When recalling his music origins he explained “I went to high school down the road at Roy C Ketcham High School. I was in band, choir, chamber choir, wind ensemble and jazz band”. He graduated from Ketcham in 2000 where he went down the road to Marist College and studied communications. Yet what made his experience at Marist memorable was that of his time within the Music Department.

Mike Napolitano ’04, MA ’17 at his desk

Immediately when Napolitano was a freshman on campus, he started in the Marching Band and his love of music further grew. He kept heavily involved with the music department through the singers, band and other small ensembles. Yet it was his senior year that opened a brand new door. “It was my senior year. We had a blackout on the east course and I had my appendix removed” he chuckled “This meant I had to miss marching season”. He had an extended recovery because of the surgery, yet he contributed behind the scenes of the band helping Music Director Art Himmelberger work with the band. Because of this, he was able to find a job at the campus after graduation. After working in Human Resources at Marist for the fall of 2004, a position opened up which included organization of finances and course registrations, in which he was asked to join. “I was kind of picking up on the process while volunteering at the offices” he mentioned while explaining his transition from HR back to the Music Department.

During his time at Marist, Napolitano got involved with the Band service fraternity known as Kappa Kappa Psi. When asked about his involvement, he described it as such “When I became a member in 2002, our founding fathers graduated out. it left us with four members and we had to step up and become leaders”. He served as the role of President and upon graduating served as the Chapter Sponsor for Marist. Yet his impact on Kappa Kappa Psi expanded far beyond that of Marist. He explained “When I became chapter president in 2003, we had a visit from one of our chapter presidents … It was that introduction to what the national chapter provided me helped me understand that what we have on our campus is somewhat greater and larger” This individual became his mentor as he helped expand the fraternity’s role on campus.

In 2011, he further got involved and chartered a Kappa Kappa Psi Alumni Organization which supported initiatives in the area. “Once that happened,” he described “there was a little bit more exposure for what I do in the community that came to be noticed”. He expanded his horizon and worked with the National Alumni Association of Kappa Kappa Psi. He then served on the National Council and was getting national attention with getting an Outstanding Alumni Award to Marist’s chapter being recognized on a national scale. He eventually moved off from the Alumni chapter board and became a District Governor in 2016 (an overseer of chapters across the Northeast United States).

Finally, when asked what his motto was regarding day to day life, he explained four words: do better, try harder. “We can be the best that we can be and sometimes we falter but we are contributers to a greater cause [musical excellence]”. Through his time at Marist and working with the National Chapter of Kappa Kappa Psi, Napolitano learned that by understanding people have a greater role in the greater good of music education, progress and achievement is brought to those around you. It is that that has made Napolitano an important aspect of the Marist College Music Department.

McNamara Does it All for Marist and Ireland

Marist men’s baseball pitcher Conor McNamara finds excitement in his new role with the team and his past and upcoming experiences with the Irish National Team.

conor mcnamara

“I have a connection with the Irish team,” said McNamara. “He knew me and brought me in for a quick bullpen and threw on camera for them. They sent it over to the Irish guys and that was it.”

The pitcher found himself a spot in the bullpen on the Irish National Team. They are playing for a qualifying spot in the upcoming World Baseball Classic.

The World Baseball Classic is an international tournament that is similar to the World Cup for the world of soccer. It involves 16 teams that are selected through a lengthy qualification process. McNamara has the chance to reach the big stage with his national team and play in one of baseball’s most coveted tournaments. He sees optimism with his national team and hopes to reach the coveted World Baseball Classic with his teammates from Ireland.

“We’re looking to qualify for the World Baseball Classic if we win this next upcoming tournament,” said McNamara. “It’s exciting.”

McNamara saw his role switch this season from starting pitcher to reliever and has since embraced the new role. He is pitching nearly every game rather than starting once every few days. He has garnished in the excitement of the tougher aspects of being thrown into a game.

“So far, it’s been different,” said McNamara. “I enjoy it. I enjoy the high energy and coming in with guys on base in a tight spot.”

McNamara sees more intensity in his new position in the bullpen. The transition from earlier innings to later ones is one that he realizes brings higher significance to his outings.

“It’s more of the high leverage innings,” said the 20-year old. “You’re only out there for a short period of time so you kind of have to make the most of it. You have less room for error. Every pitch is a high-pressure pitch, that’s the biggest thing.”

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A change in scenery has been nothing for Conor McNamara. He has a steadily declining 4.74 ERA and has been a key piece to the Marist bullpen throughout the season. McNamara started the season with five shutouts coming out of the bullpen until a rough six run outing against Eastern Carolina University. A dominant 4.2 inning outing against Monmouth on April 6 showed the dominance that McNamara can bring, striking out seven Hawks on Marist’s way to the victory.

Between the two squads, McNamara continues to prove his worth and show his versatility, something that will get you far in the world of baseball. For now, Conor’s focus is with Marist. The Red Foxes are 7-5 in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference with hopes to repeat the history of the 2017 team that went on to win the conference.

“We know what we want to do and we’re just taking it one game at a time,” said McNamara. “We think we can do it with the team we have and we’re gonna give every team we face all we’ve got.”

Genocide Survivor Shares His Story

Students gathered in Hancock on April 12  in remembrance of those who died in the Rwandan Genocide just 25 years ago. This year, the school welcomed a survivor of the genocide, Daniel Ndamwizeye, better known professionally as Daniel Trust. Trust said in his talk, “Sometimes I would cry and pray, ‘why am I alive, why did I not get killed’ through it all I always had hope that it would be better for me one day.”

Trust was born and raised in Rwanda and is a survivor of the Genocide. He immigrated to the United States when he was 15 as a refugee.

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Trust Speaking to Attendees

Trust was five years old when the genocide began. He was the youngest of eight children. His father was Hutu and his mother was a Tutsi. Just before the Genocide started, Trust recalls his parents calling him and siblings into the living room. “They asked us to pray because something terrible was going to happen to us. We prayed for protection and my parents were Seventh-day Adventists, and we lived close to the church. Many people at the time thought that if they went to a place of worship they would be safe. Myself, my mom and two sisters, we went to hide at the church we worship at.”

After a few days in the Church, people with machetes came and took everyone they found outside and began killing them one by one, he recounted. He recalls how frustrated he was hearing his mother’s screams, but was unable to do anything. “At the time in Rwanda, the killers had no mercy, if they knew you were Tutsi somehow someway they would kill you. That moment of my mom being killed was the last memory I have of her.”

Trust hid along with two of his sisters, however, they would be caught trying to run away and killed. His father also was caught trying to find safety and was killed as well. The people who killed his family would go on to steal all their possessions and set their house on fire.

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Students Listen Attentively to Trust

However, Trust speaks with a positive outlook. He said, “When I share my story I always say I survived by the grace of God because I could have been killed as well.”

Eventually, Trust was able to make it the Congo for safety until after the genocide was over. However, he still faced a number of hardships. “I was constantly beaten for doing anything. If I was washing dishes and I do not do it correctly, I was beaten for it. If I was being helped with homework and I said two plus two equals five instead of four, I would get beaten. I was not allowed to have friends, and life was just very hard for me. And because of everything I was going through I performed very poorly in school. Sometimes I would cry and pray, ‘why am I alive, why did I not get killed’ through it all I always had hope that it would be better for me one day.”

In 2005 Trust was able to move to Connecticut. He attended high school, and by the time he graduated he was very involved academically and with extracurricular activities. He was then able to receive a number of scholarships, allowing him to attend Southern Connecticut State University. There he graduated in 5 years and worked full-time will working towards his degree. At the age of 19, he got a job at TD Bank and worked there for many years. In 2013 he was able to buy his first home. After purchasing it, he went to a grocery store and bought himself a cake to celebrate. He also buys himself a cake for his birthday every year. Trust emphasizes the importance of focusing on the positive things in life and celebrating yourself.

Trust his now a youth advocate, an international speaker and is the President and CEO of the Daniel Trust Foundation. His foundation is a non-profit for low-income students and teachers that are or hope to make big impacts on the community and individuals who may not have the same advantages as other students.

“I would not be here today if it was not for all the people who invested in me,” Trust said.

 

ROTC Weekend in the Woods

Cadet Sasha Schmitt took on strong leadership roles this weekend as the ROTC program traveled to West Point to complete three full days of rugged field training.

Schmitt spoke highly of the field training exercise trip, also known as FDX. She explained that the best part is coming back and looking at everything she accomplished.

“Somethings I didn’t even know I was capable of doing. It’s also crazy to think that you really can survive off of just the basics.”

Schmitt comes from a family of impressive leadership roles. Her father, Paul Schmitt a West Point graduate, has had a long career in the military. He now works as a Defense Attaché, meaning he is responsible for military matters between the United States and the Ukraine. Having such a good experience with the military, Sasha’s father is the reason that she joined the ROTC program at Marist College.

“I actually didn’t really know that I wanted to do it in the beginning, but my dad convinced me because he said that I’ll learn a lot of other valuable life skills other than army tactics. He told me to try it out for a semester and if I didn’t like it I wouldn’t have to continue, but I really liked it so I stayed with the program” stated Schmitt.

As a junior with two years of training experience she was able to put her skills to use and fill some big leadership roles.

Throughout the weekend Schmitt was a Squad Leader, meaning she was in charge of three to five other ROTC members, making sure they knew and understood their mission. She also was a Platoon Sergeant, a job where she was responsible for ensuring discipline for squad leaders.

After participating in three FDX weekend trips, Schmitt felt ready to take on these roles.

“I personally think that every time I do another one I feel more and more prepared” said Schmitt. She explained that the first time she went she didn’t know what to expect. She’s learned important lessons such as packing her bag properly so it’s easy to access her necessities in the field, or even waterproofing all of her belongings.

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Cadet Schmitt, on the right, posing with Cadet Brehm under a poncho tent.

All of Schmitt’s hard work in training will be put toward the summer which she will spend at Fort Knox in Kentucky, participating in a 37 day training camp that will test her on everything that she’s learned in ROTC.

Besides from the FDX trip that takes place every semester, Schmitt gains practice by attending physical training three days a week at 6:15 in the morning.

She is also required to take a Military Science course that helps her develop leadership abilities, and teaches her important knowledge that she will need once she is commissioned into the army.  

Schmitt is already planning for the future, as she’s signed a contract into the army, requiring her to serve for four years. Once she graduates in May, she will be commissioned as a second lieutenant.

She will eventually pick which area she prefers to go into, and she’s hoping to get military intelligence, which entails collecting and analyzing information in order to guide and assist commanders.

Schmitt stated that she will decide later on whether or not she will stay in the army for longer than four years. However, after she serves, she would like to own her own business or work with international logistics.

For now, Cadet Schmitt is working hard in her classes and focusing on her ROTC program, which she really enjoys.

Schmitt commented on the close dynamic between the members of Marist ROTC. “I love it. We’re a big family. I always have their back and they always have mine.”

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Members of Marist’s ROTC Program.