Home Carrollton CHS AFJROTC Raider Team Prepares For Inaugural Competition Season Ahead

CHS AFJROTC Raider Team Prepares For Inaugural Competition Season Ahead

The Carrollton High School AFJROTC Raiders team is preparing for its first competition season this fall. Pictured are Cadet Luisa Guidel (top left) and Cadet Jaxon Fowler (bottom right) with other local cadets training over the summer. 

A new extracurricular offered within Carrollton High School’s Air Force JROTC program is gearing up for its inaugural season this fall.

The AFJROTC Raider team spent part of the summer training for its upcoming competition season. According to Lieutenant Colonel Mike Farr, Senior Aerospace Instructor at CHS, the Raiders team is the most physically demanding program offered within AFJROTC.

“Cadets who participate are looking to challenge their physical endurance, mental toughness, and also strengthen their leadership skills,” he said.

Farr said there will be competitions at the local and national levels.

“Generally, there will be some sort of fitness or individual strength tests such as push-ups, curl-ups, tire drag, or obstacle course,” he noted. “It has been referred to as high-school level Army Ranger Training — of course, safety is paramount. We describe it as a mud run with miles of running and obstacles being commonplace.”

Master Sergeant McLain, Aerospace Science Instructor (ASI) at CHS, has volunteered to serve as the head coach for the Raider team.

“I’m really excited about our Raider team,” said McLain. “My motivational saying is, ‘Don’t stop when you’re tired; you stop when the job is done!’”

Cadet Lieutenant Christopher Zimmer is the team captain for the Raiders. He said he is looking forward to the season ahead.

“Dream big and dare to fail because if you don’t dream big, you’ll never know what you can accomplish,” Zimmer said.

Other extracurriculars the CHS AFJROTC program offers are the Flight Academy Scholarship Program, CyberPatriot, the Cyber Academy, and the Kitty Hawk and Space Society. The goal is to offer a range of programs so all AFJROTC cadets can get involved.

The Air Force Junior ROTC Flight Academy Scholarship Program is an Air Force-level initiative in collaboration with the commercial aviation industry to address the national civilian and military pilot shortage. The Flight Academy allows aspiring young aviators to get their private pilot’s certification, at no cost, during an eight-week summer course at partner universities. The scholarship covers transportation, room and board, academics and flight hours required to potentially earn a private pilot certificate. The scholarship is valued at approximately $23,000.

CyberPatriot is the National Youth Cyber Education Program. The competition puts teams of high school and middle school students in the position of newly hired IT professionals tasked with managing the network of a small company. In the rounds of competition, teams are given a set of virtual images that represent operating systems and are tasked with finding cybersecurity vulnerabilities within the images and hardening the system while maintaining critical services in a 6-hour period. Teams compete for the top placement within their state and region, and the top teams in the nation earn all-expenses paid trips to Baltimore, MD for the National Finals Competition, where they can earn national recognition and scholarship money.

The Cyber Academy is designed to generate interest in a vital skill set. In 2021, Headquarters AFJROTC announced summer scholarship funding for AFJROTC cadets to attend an online Cyber college course at select public and private universities. Selected cadets were identified through a competitive, multi-phased boarding process. The scholarship funds one college course, which awards approximately three college credit hours upon successful completion. Cadet Malachi Thomas was selected, attended, and completed the Cyber Academy last summer, making him the first Cyber Academy selectee from CHS.

Kitty Hawk Air & Space Society (KHAS): KHAS is the official academic honor society of AFJROTC. Established in AY71-72, KHAS is sponsored and supported by the Air Force Association’s (AFA) Aerospace Education Foundation, KHAS upholds academic standards and promotes further interest in academic achievement. Specifically, its purpose is to promote high academic standards and achievement as well as school and community service, encourage self-confidence and initiative, help develop leadership skills, and further members’ knowledge of the Air Force’s role in aerospace.

CHS Principal Ian Lyle said he is excited for the inaugural CHS AFJROTC Raiders team to compete this fall.

“Col. Farr and Mgt. McLain do a great job with our AFJROTC program at CHS and I am looking forward to seeing what this team of cadets accomplish.”

Individuals interested in learning more about Carrollton High School’s AFJROTC program should contact Col. Mike Farr at [email protected].