MARINE CORPS BASE QUANTICO, Va. --
More than 20 students from D.C.-area Navy Reserve Officers Training Corps programs came to Camp Upshur, aboard Marine Corps Base Quantico, to train Nov. 15.
The Naval ROTC program is a college-based, commissioned officer training program of the Navy and the Marine Corps. Throughout their four years of college, the students take college-accredited courses and military training before and sometimes after their basic training at Officer Candidates School, while they pursue their undergraduate degrees.
Majority of the students came from George Washington University, but a few were from Howard University, The Catholic University of America, and the University of Maryland.
“The military college courses they take and training like this holds significant value for the students,” said Capt. Sherley Batista, Marine officer instructor, George Washington University. “They are outstanding classes and get them into the war-fighting mindset.”
On Saturday, students completed a land navigation course, indoor simulated marksmanship training, and ended their day by completing the obstacle course.
Sgt. Richard Mccain, training chief, Reserve Support Unit, Camp Upshur, gave the students a crash course in using the M16A4 service rifle in the ISMT. He showed the students everything from loading, shooting, type of positions and remedial actions. The weapon safety rules were stressed before the students received a weapon.
There were three different scenarios the students participated in. The first was shooting targets on the range firing from the 200-yard line. The second simulated a breeching a warehouse where the students had to eradicate hostiles inside. The third was an ambush in the desert.
“I have never experienced doing things like this,” said Christopher Abraham, George Washington University Naval ROTC freshman. “So far it has been an awesome day. I’m grateful I was afforded this opportunity.”
After being briefed on the proper way to do so, the students tackled the obstacle course. To make it even more of a challenge, the students split into four teams and competed against each other in a relay. The winners of the competition took a well-needed rest while the other teams jogged two laps around the obstacle course.
“Training events like these helps them get ahead when they go to OCS and The Basic School,” Batista said. “I wish that I would have done what they are doing when I was in college. It’s a great base line.”