☷From Ranger Challenge to Sandhurst Army ROTC Teams Ready to take on Sandhurst
U.S. Army ( By Press Release office)
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Auburn University’s Ranger Challenge carries their weighted litter through the Buy - In event obstacle course during 6th Brigade’s Army ROTC Ranger Challenge on January 13 , 2022 at Fort Benning , Ga . The litter had to be carried throughout the duration of the course , and weights were either added or removed at different obstacles . During the Buy - In event , Cadets had to work as a team to complete 15 strenuous obstacles on a course while being timed . The timed results from each team will establish the ranking order for the next competition . | Photo by Sarah Windmueller , U . S . Army Cadet Command Public Affairs Cadets from Penn State complete the sled drag as part of the Fitness Event that kicked off the 2nd Brigade Ranger Challenge Oct . 22 . 42 teams from programs across the brigade competed in this year ' s Ranger Challenge at Joint Base McGuire - Dix - Lakehurst . ( Photo by Michael Maddox , Cadet Command Public Affairs ) Cadets from University of North Georgia Alpha Team carry their watercraft towards the finish of the Zodiac water course challenge during the 1st Brigade Ranger Challenge competition , Fort Knox , Ky . , Oct . 28 , 2021 . | Photo by Kyle Crawford , US Army Cadet Command Public Affairs Back to Army ROTC This is it , the end of the road… the road to Sandhurst . The 2022 Sandhurst Military Skills Competition has arrived along with 48 of the world’s best teams to face - off April 29 - 30 , 2022 at the United States Military Academy–West Point . “Sandhurst is a military skills competition that was brought over by the English to West Point as an Officer’s competition , initially . It’s grown to bring in ROTC teams and other academies like the Air Force , Navy and Coast Guard , and now we bring in other international Cadets , ” said Noah Umezaki , a senior from the University of North Georgia . “It’s just going over military training , military skills , and endurance . Anything you can really think of that would be tied to military training , we will be testing and competing against each other this weekend . ” Lt . Col . Nate Conkey is the Professor of Military Science at Auburn University . He sees Sandhurst as “a massive opportunity for these Cadets . ” “We’re training with and for one another at a team level , but also training with and for national and international partners , ” he said . “It ' s important for the camaraderie , the teamwork and certainly for training whatever might be next , ” Conkey adds . “It gets them a chance to improve their leadership skills–no better way to figure that out than competing on the fields of friendly strife . We learn a whole lot of things about ourselves when we’re introduced to the physical stress , the mental stress , and knowing that we can push well beyond any known barriers that we had before . ” Over the next two days , the competition will be fierce . Teams have been training all year for the chance to prove their worth and vie for the glory and title of being the best in the world . “We train five days a week , and we split that between technical , physical , and academic training . ” said Cadet John Shustack , a senior from Auburn University . “We try to keep everything well - rounded , and we tie everything in together . We combine what we’ve learned and we test each other . We put everybody forward so that way we’re all strong and competent on everything . ” Teams battled it out against their friends , peers , and rivals in the brigade ranger challenges and have now reached the pinnacle of collegiate military sports . Each program brings a level of training and experience that has set them apart from other programs . “It takes every Cadet from all over the world–from every backroad in America to every mountain in Europe–it takes them and places them in a global competition that competes against each other to show who is the best ROTC program or the best academy . That’s why we’re here , ” said Cadet Zachary Zotti , a sophomore from Penn State University . This year’s contenders include Cadets from Army ROTC , West Point , international programs , as well as Naval , Coast Guard , and Air Force academies . The 16 ROTC teams , representing each of the eight U . S . Army Cadet Command brigades , see these match - ups as a chance to demonstrate the leadership excellence their programs strive to achieve all year . “Competition breeds strong and adaptable leaders , ” said Umezaki . “Having an event like this , where you have so many different competitors from so many different types of trainings , paths , and methodologies and being able to see other people compete and what their strategies and tactics are compared to yours is how you win . ” When teams step - off tomorrow morning , the movement throughout the day and evening will be non - stop as they navigate their way through twelve obstacles and an 8 - mile ruck march . Although the teams feel prepared for the challenges of the weekend , there is still a level of anxiety as they approach unknown territory . “I think the biggest thing for our team will just be knowing who is going to be on each event , because we have our own breakdown and roster for everything , but my understanding is that for certain events [USMA] will get to pick , ” Shustack said . “We’ve trained to that standard , and we’ve made sure everybody is spun up on everything , so that way no matter who they choose to put on an event we’re all still good to go . But still just because of that level of uncertainty I think that’s probably our biggest pause . ” Many teams have seasoned competitors , now in their fourth and final year of competing on a Ranger Challenge team . Other teams , bring new competitors to the playing field . “This is our teams first time here since 2013 , so we are fresh on experience , ” said Garrett Young , a junior from Penn State University . “We’re interested to see what they’re going to throw at us , and how they’re going to throw it at us . We’re just going to roll with the punches and put out our best . ” When the dust has settled , and the last boots have crossed the finish line on April 30 , an overall winner will be announced based on their performance during these next two days . “We’re looking forward to how everything will play out and seeing how the teams do under the real pressure , ” said Umezaki . “I think we’ll do really well . Obviously you can’t win every lane , but I think we’ll be able to bounce back and continue the mission and keep trying our best . ” About Army ROTC Army ROTC is one of the best leadership courses in the country and is part of your college curriculum . Through classes and field training , Army ROTC provides you with the tools to become an Army Officer without interfering with your other classes . ROTC also provides you with discipline and money for tuition while enhancing your college experience . Army ROTC offers pathways to becoming an Army Officer for high school students , current active duty Soldiers , and for current National Guard and Army Reserve Soldiers through the Simultaneous Membership Program . Follow us on: Facebook , Twitter , Instagram , YouTube , LinkedIn & Pinterest
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