WMU News

Bronco Battalion cadet is tops in nation

Aug. 30, 2000

KALAMAZOO -- A Western Michigan University student from Ludington, Mich., recently achieved top standing among thousands of Reserve Officers Training Corps cadets in the United States.

Jeremy Horstman, a senior majoring in management with a minor in military science, received the highest score in the nation at the U.S. Army ROTC Advanced Camp 2000 in Ft. Lewis, Wash. The five-week program is required of all ROTC cadets during the summer preceding their senior year of college. Cadets are awarded points throughout their Advanced Camp experience, and with 996 points out of a total of 1,000 possible, Horstman tied for first place with another cadet. The pair bested some 3,500 other students from ROTC programs around the nation.

"Anything above 900 points at Advanced Camp is generally considered in the excellent range," says Captain Jim Purrenhage, the WMU instructor who trained Horstman for Advanced Camp during the cadet's junior year. "We are obviously very pleased, but not completely surprised. Jeremy is focused and motivated, and he has displayed excellent character. He is exactly the type of officer the Army is looking for."

Advanced Camp scores are based on a cadet's performance in four areas: physical fitness (100 points); land navigation during both daylight and darkness (100 points); performance and potential during a variety of tasks (100 points); and leadership skills in 16 focus areas (700 points).

Cadets also are scored throughout their junior year on a 3,000-point system. Horstman's Advanced Camp score, which accounts for one third of his overall score, helped push him into the number one slot among WMU's 12 senior-level cadets. According to Purrenhage, this ranking system plays a crucial role in determining a cadet's future, as the Army uses the scores to slot graduates as officers in their preferred branch of the Army. Horstman's Advanced Camp performance virtually ensures that he will land his desired post as an aviation officer, a highly sought-after position.

Part of the Haworth College of Business, WMU's Military Science Program is an elective academic minor through which students can qualify for the Reserve Officers Training Corps. The program stresses leadership and military skills training that prepares students for commissions as second lieutenants in the active Army, Army Reserves or Army National Guard after they complete their baccalaureate degrees. ROTC programs train 70 percent of the officers in today's Army.

Horstman is the son of Frederick and Jane Horstman of Ludington, Mich.

Media contact: Jessica English, 616 387-8400, jessica.english@wmich.edu

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