The Army JROTC academic team representing the Tinian Jr./Sr. High School and the CNMI Public School System were recently recognized by Defense Secretary Leon Panetta for their participation in the JROTC Leadership Symposium and Academic Bowl Championship in Washington, D.C.
Education Commissioner Rita A. Sablan disclosed to Saipan Tribune that the Defense secretary recently sent the Public School System a letter to congratulate the CNMI Team for its participation in the program.
The JROTC Leadership Symposium and Academic Bowl Championship is sponsored by the Army JROTC and conducted by the College Options Foundation. The event is a nationally recognized academic and leadership competition exclusively for JROTC students.
Cadets who participate learn the values of citizenship and academic competition while increasing their SAT/ACT scores.
During Tuesday's Education Day celebration on Tinian, Sablan recognized the Tinian JROTC cadets and awarded them certificates of appreciation from the U.S. Department of Defense.
Sablan said the DOD chief's recognition is unprecedented for PSS, which has been participating in the national event for some three to four years now. She admitted to being surprised upon receiving Panetta's letter.
According to her, the recognition from DOD is proof that CNMI students are very competitive, well-prepared, and shine in both academic and extra-curricular activities.
Along with Panetta's letter of recognition, PSS also received a commendation letter from the College Options Foundation.
“On behalf of the U.S. Army JROTC, we are thrilled to congratulate the Tinian High School Army JROTC Leadership Team for their participation in the 2011-2012 JROTC Leadership Symposium and Academic Bowl, which tool place in Washington June 2012. This is a monumental accomplishment,” said Foundation president Terry Wilfong, describing the U.S. DOD letter as an extraordinary acknowledgment of the team's accomplishments.
The CNMI Army JROTC Leadership Team competed against thousands of teams from around the world to advance to the championship. There are 1,645 JROTC programs in the world. The CNMI team was one of 24 high school teams that competed in the event.