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Little Rock AFB hosts Junior ROTC Expo

A girl wearing protective military gear puts on a gas mask

Mattlyn McClain, an Army Junior Reserve Training Officer Corps cadet, dons a gas mask during a Junior ROTC Expo May 3, 2019, at Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas. Cadets from Air Force, Army, and Navy Junior ROTC programs across Arkansas, Tennessee and Mississippi toured Little Rock AFB and its amenities to experience the active-duty lifestyle. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Mercedes Taylor)

A group of high school students stand in front of the back of a C-130J aircraft with a hangar in the background

Students from nine high schools across Arkansas, Mississippi and Tennessee attend a Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps Expo May 3, 2019, at Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas. Cadets from Air Force, Army and Navy Junior ROTC programs toured base amenities and exhibits to experience life as an active-duty service member for the day. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Mercedes Taylor)

A group of high school students and their chaperone gather around a booth with two Airmen. One is in an Airman Battle Uniform and the other is in an operational camouflage pattern uniform.

A group of Junior Reserve Training Officer Corps cadets view a 19th Civil Engineer Squadron readiness and emergency management exhibit at a Junior ROTC Expo May 3, 2019, at Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas. In addition to exhibits, students also viewed a military working dog and a base honor guard demonstration. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Mercedes Taylor)

A man wearing a black shirt saying "RAVEN" on his back says stands next to a high school student with his fists up in a sparring position.

(Right) Treveon Banks, an Air Force Junior Reserve Training Officer Corps cadet, spars with U.S. Air Force Airman 1st Class Michael Smith, 19th Security Forces Squadron Raven, during a Junior ROTC Expo May 3, 2019, at Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas. Cadets from Air Force, Army, and Navy Junior ROTC programs were invited to see the life of an active-duty service member for the day. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Mercedes Taylor)

LITTLE ROCK AIR FORCE BASE, Ark. --

Students from nine high schools across Arkansas, Mississippi and Tennessee were invited to attend a Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps Expo at Little Rock Air Force Base, Arkansas, May 3.

More than 300 cadets from multiple Air Force, Army, and Navy Junior ROTC programs attended the event to experience the active-duty lifestyle as a service member for a day.

“We were very excited to attend this event,” said retired U.S. Navy Lt. Cmdr. Michael Raymer, a Navy Junior ROTC senior naval science instructor. “Our program’s goal is to help set and achieve goals of our students, and events like this help pique their interest in the opportunities that are available to them.”

Students, teachers and chaperones toured base amenities such as the base gym and the airmen dormitories. Exhibitions at the Junior ROTC Expo included a military working dog and a base honor guard demonstration.

“I had a lot of fun,” said Ashton Outlaw, a Navy Junior ROTC cadet. “This was a very thrilling experience.”

While the Junior ROTC Expo focused on military careers, the true intent was to inform students of the avenues available for them to accomplish their goals and inspire them to be leaders in society.

“It’s so important to engage with our community at a human level,” said U.S. Air Force Capt. Bree Lanz, Junior ROTC Expo planning committee member. “Events like this give us the chance to get the word out about the opportunities the military could provide for them and give them an inside look at the things they could do. Ultimately, we’re talking to the future leaders in our community, and potentially building a better total work force.”

 

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