The Ohio Department of Education on March 13 welcomed more than 250 students from several dozen high schools around the state to celebrate their commitments to serve in the U.S. military.
High school seniors and juniors who are entering service academies or have committed to serve as active duty, Reserve or National Guard members were invited to take part in the Armed Forces Career Commitment Ceremony at COSI (Center of Science and Industry), 333 West Broad St., in Columbus.
The students signed commitment letters, received red, white, and blue cords from the USO, and celebrated with their families and members of the military and education communities.
Terry McDermott, a veteran of the 82nd Airborne Division and an educator at Olentangy Orange High School, provided opening remarks.
Grove City Central Crossing High School’s Naval Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps conducted the presentation of colors, with service song accompaniment by Anthony Wayne High School’s Symphonic Winds.
“I am grateful to the teachers, educators, and families who prepared these students for their future success,” said State Superintendent of Public Instruction Paolo DeMaria. “Along with college and career-tech education programs, military service is a postsecondary pathway that offers meaningful, rewarding, lifelong career experiences and opportunities.”
The commitment ceremony also featured:
- David Porter of the U.S. Army, 2018 graduate and enlisted service member.
- Retired Col. Thomas N. Moe of the U.S. Air Force, former prisoner of war for five and one-half years.
- Gen. James R. Camp, who serves as Ohio assistant adjutant general for Air.
- Retired Maj. Gen. Deborah Ashenhurst, who serves as director of the Ohio Department of Veterans Services.
- Chad Marzec, 2006 graduate of West Point Military Academy and a varsity coach at Liberty-Benton High School in Findlay.
This marks the second annual Armed Forces Career Commitment Ceremony.