Advanced Camp is a 31-day training event that is designed to assess a Cadet’s ability to demonstrate proficiency in basic officer leadership tasks. Cadets are evaluated on their ability to lead at the Squad and Platoon levels, both in garrison and tactical environments. Cadets are mentally and physically tested during a 12-day consequence-driven field training exercise that replicates a combat training center rotation. Advanced Camp is a time over the summer where cadets from across the nation come together and learn from each other since every ROTC program has its different ways of teaching the cadet command curriculum. Successful completion of the Advanced Camp is a prerequisite for commissioning. Not only is it necessary to complete Advanced Camp to commission as an Army officer through Army ROTC, but an individual cadet’s performance at advanced camp is also directly tied into their ranking amongst the rest of the nation’s cadets. This matters when the cadets are seniors and are competing to go into the active-duty U.S. Army, competing for their choice of job in the Army, and for where they will go for their first duty station. Cadets come back to their campuses after Advanced Camp ready to mentor the younger cadets with the motivation, knowledge, and professionalism they learned over the rigorous 31-days in Fort Knox, KY.

Read below for Cadet Melanie Herrera’s experience at Advanced Camp in Fort Knox, KY this past summer.

“Being in ROTC has helped me learn about who I am and how I am as a leader. Throughout the years, I have been actively learning about what it takes to take on a leadership role, but I have also learned military tactics and skills that can help me in my future career. This summer I was able to attend ROTC advanced camp, located in Fort Knox, Kentucky. Throughout cadet summer training, I was able to gain insightful tactical skills from other cadets around the country. I have no military background from my family history and therefore a transition to a military environment was a little rough at first, but I got to learn from other peers about how they would approach certain missions and their way of leading and how learning from them would help me become a better leader. Nonetheless, I got to have once-in-a-lifetime experiences and also got to make friends from around the country. I think the most memorable experience I had from camp was the Confidence and Obstacle course that consisted of repelling from a large 64 ft Tower and jumping up and down an obstacle course. Overall, I am glad I got to go and experience what advanced camp had to offer. I will always carry on with me what I have learned from Army ROTC and will continue to grow as an individual.”