The 24th Military Ball held at the Royal Taga Hall of Saipan World Resort last Saturday was attended by different public high schools in the CNMI. The Saipan Southern High School Manta Ray Battalion was this year’s host. It also celebrated the 100th anniversary of JROTC. The Army JROTC was created in 1916 to motivate young people to become better citizens.
Public School System associate commissioner Yvonne Pangelinan was the guest speaker. According to Pangelinan “You cannot have leadership without citizenship, and you cannot be a good citizen without leadership.” I fully agree.
I should say I am far from being a good citizen but my training under the JROTC has made me a better person. It schooled me about life’s challenges, it taught me how to become a good leader; and it educated me far beyond the spectrum of military training.
The Military Ball was not just an avenue to party but also to build camaraderie amongst the different battalions. It promotes team spirit and fosters goodwill among the participating schools. It is the culminating event for the JROTC as it closes the school year.
My experience with the JROTC is far from over, in fact, it only just began. I’m looking forward to learn new things, to gain more knowledge in becoming a leader and to future competition that we can all excel at. I strongly encourage all upcoming freshmen to take up JROTC because it not only teaches great values in life and it also helps weaklings like me to become stronger. Game strong. Army strong.
C/SGT Mackenzie Perez is a member of the Marianas High School Dolphin Battalion. She is a freshman at MHS.