USMC Leadership Program Follow-Up

MaKayla Munn, Staff Writer

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Oorah! After being accepted into the USMC Leadership and Character Development Academy, I got to spend a week learning how to become a better, more confident leader and person. During my time in Quantico, Virginia, I got to do and see things that most people never will.

One of the first things I got to do was go to the HMX-1, which is a level three clearance building and talk to the pilots of Marine One, go inside the Marine One, and watch a demonstration of the attack dogs. The second day I got to go visit Washington D.C and begin with The Holocaust Museum. We got to see the different museums, monuments, and The White House. At the end of the day in D.C, we watched the sunset parade and the silent gun patrol. The things I got to see really made me more proud and amazed by our country and the people who fight for it.

Another once in a lifetime experience was being able to talk to some extraordinary people from the Marine Corp. Two of the many people I got to meet was Lieutenant General Bailey and Lieutenant Colonel Shusko, who taught us some martial arts moves, is the director of the Marine Martial Arts Institute and used to be a pilot for Ronald Regan. I was able to speak to them and hear their stories and advice on different events and scenarios. I learned a lot and heard some excellent advice to use now and in the future.

During the week we had to do a lot of different physical training exercises. One day we had to do a mile; another day was a bunch of pushups, jumping jacks, pull-ups, and sit-ups, and other days were different scenarios we had to go through. I also got to go to the Marine Officer Base and try out the reaction course which is the obstacle course there. I also got to watch some of the officers try them out themselves. During the obstacles, I learned that I can push myself to do much more than I ever thought possible.

The thing that I loved and that affected me the most was the bond I formed with my squad. I had twenty-two people in my squad who were all from different places of the United States. During the week, we had gotten so close and had a bond that I did not know was so strong until I had to leave them. I could not believe that after just one week, I could get so attached to my fellow company mates. I learned so much about each of them and where they came from; it really helped me grow mentally and emotionally. We all helped each other and pushed each other to our limits, and I will never forget how each one of them made me become a better person today.

After doing and seeing all these things in just one week, it really made me appreciate and respect the military more than ever before. I think every junior and senior should try to apply to this academy; the benefits are huge and the experiences are even better. I cannot even begin to tell you all the things I learned and experienced during my time at the USMC Leadership and Character Development Academy.



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USMC Leadership Program Follow-Up