For the first time in its 21-year history, the Granbury High School Marine Corps JROTC Battalion has earned the Marine Corps Reserve Association (MRCA) Outstanding Unit award while also receiving its 8th straight Naval Honor School award.
Out of 268 Marine Corps JROTC units, there are only four battalions chosen for this award each year, and it comes with an exceptional designation for Granbury’s MJROTC instructors Lt. Col (Ret.) Scott Casey and First Sergeant Johnny Rositas (1SG Ret.). News of the honor was announced Thursday, Aug 26, 2021
The award is so respected that it grants Granbury’s MJROTC unit the designation to send direction nominations for an appointment at all three U.S. military academies.
Additionally, both Casey and Rositas will be granted the same ability to write letters of recommendation directly to the Naval Academy, the U.S. Air Force Academy, and the U.S. Military Academy (West Point).
The nomination and letters of recommendation carry just as much weight as a letter from a U.S. Representative or Senator.
The awards selection was based on several criteria, including cadet citizenship, the percentage of cadets involved in student government organizations, the number of cadets active in school activities and clubs, the number of community service hours for the unit as a whole and per cadet, the number of organizations assisted by the unit, and scholastic achievements including the number of academic awards and scholarships given to cadets. The units were also measured by participation in public affairs events, drill team competitions, rifle team competitions, physical fitness team competitions, and field trips.
While it is the first time Granbury’s MJROTC has been selected for the elite honor, it should come as no surprise to those familiar with the program after earning eight straight Naval Honor School awards. Just 10-percent of MJROTC units earn the award each year.
“We are very proud of the cadets’ hard work and dedication and would also like to thank all teachers, staff, and administrators at the high school for the outstanding support and involvement with the cadets,” Casey said.
Cadet leadership for the 2021-22 school year is also in place.
Serving as battalion commander is Cadet Lt. Colonel Sarah Folsom. The executive officer is Cadet Major Alexis DeLaPena, and the Sergeant Major is Cadet Sgt. Major Ricky Layland. Other staff members are Cadet 2nd Lieutenant Christian Sells, S-1 administration officer; Cadet 1st Lieutenant Ashton Arlington, S-2 recruiting officer; Cadet Captain Ashley Jimenez, S-3 operations officer; and Cadet Captain Laura Blankenship, S-4 logistics officer.