A fresh start

Colonel Wimbish takes over the JROTC program


Col. Wimbish answers sophomore Ian Dauber’s question about the curriculum. Asking questions in JROTC is highly encouraged,

Sarah Dreyer, Staff Reporter

The Pledge of Allegiance begins, and second period JROTC, with their hands at their hearts, recite the pledge. Last year, Lt. Col. Dale Johnson led the cadets, but now Col. Calvin Wimbish is in charge.

Transferring from Cape Coral High School, near the Fort Myers area, Wimbish took over the Hagerty JROTC program after Johnson’s retirement last year, making him a good replacement because of his past experience with ROTC.

Wimbish went through ROTC in college, and graduated with an undergraduate degree and was promoted to 2nd Lieutenant.

With Wimbish as the new colonel, changes have come to the JROTC program. The ranking policy, for example, is one of the major changes that will be adjusted.
“People could just take their ranks and get it signed by one of the team captains,” junior Daniel Colon said.

So far this school year, Wimbish and cadets have adjusted the ranking policy to where students, in the program, all have an equal opportunity to be promoted, and not have an unfair advantage.
With these kinds of changes comes feedback from the cadets. Senior Carson George knows these changes to the program are beneficial to the cadets.

George says that Wimbish is “motivated and dedicated” about the many possibilities the program can accomplish, like having fundraisers to bring more money into the program and recruiting more students. George brings up of how cadets will also be more in charge of how the program should run and the many events, like the yearly barbeque.

Not only will the program be undergoing changes, but Wimbish will bring to the table a new kind of teaching style. Junior Cath Fuller believes his teaching style is “very direct” and this is something Fuller likes.

“Now that Wimbish is here,” Fuller said. “Someone is directly telling them what to do, and there’s no excuse.”

With a “very direct” teaching style, there is now no excuse for anything such as wearing uniform every Wednesday. Many cadets also know that Wimbish uses examples from his life as a teaching style, like junior Kyle Cook.

“It’s not like he’s really teaching,” Cook said. “He’s showing you the way.”

Using real life examples from Wimbish’s past gives cadets a different perspective of how to become a better leader and citizen. Wimbish uses these different teaching styles to “leave an impact on you,” Cook said.

Whether cadets like Wimbish’s teaching style or not, whether cadets agree with the changes coming, Wimbish will continue to push the JROTC program to improve.

Wimbish’s plans for this year and the following years to come is to recruit more cadets and to make the program the “best it has been in years.” He also wants to make sure each cadet in JROTC learns to the highest level possible. With these goals, Wimbish plans to create a more welcoming environment and to ‘make young students better citizens.’

“Our goal, [for ROTC], is make people leaders, and through leaders and citizenship service to the community,” Wimbish said, “Understanding what their capability and potential is, realizing that the person reflects in the mirror every day is the person who is in control of their destiny, choice is the bottom line.”

Col. Wimbish receives an award from one of his high-ranking officers.