WVU Army ROTC Ceremony to commission three new officers

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Friday, December 20 three WVU students will be commissioned as Second Lieutenants in the United State Armed Forces.

WVU professor of military science, Lieutenant Colonel (LTC) Travis Betz says the three students are preparing to leave for training.

“One will be leaving to go on active dity in the U.S. Army, one is going to the U.S. Army Reserve and the other to the Virginia Natioal Guard,”Betz said,”So the U.S. Army is gaining in each of those components.”

The three graduates are:

Matthew Chapman (Silver Spring, Maryland, St. John’s College High School), B.S. Civil Engineering, Active Duty, Ordnance Corps
Emily Hummell Charlerio, Pennsylvania, Charlerio Area High School), B.S. Biochemistry, U.S. Army Reserve, Medical Service Corps
Leonardo Sanchez (Manassas, Virginia, Stonewall Jackson High School), B.S. Political Science, Virginia Army National Guard, Field Artillery

Betz says Freshmen and Sophomore students can participate in the ROTC program without making a committment to serve. During those two years students receive military instruction and training as if they were under contract.

Juniros and Seniors are under contract and graduate as officers then mobilize to their duty station.

Betz says the service obligation varies from branch and job classification.

“Depending on the branch and the type of training they get the obligation could be up to 7 years,”Betz said,”For instance, if we put an officer into the aviation corps, flight school and all the technical qualifications, that service obligation can be longer.”

Betz says the program has grown from about 20 graduates per year to as many as 30 graduates this year during the fall and spring ceremonies.

The commissioning ceremony will be at the Erickson Alumni Center at 10 a.m.

The keynote speaker is U.S. Army Colonel (Ret) John Fenzel. Fenzel has served in a variety of tactical and strategic assignments including as a White House Fellow during the Clinton and Bush administrations. He was the only active duty American officer to testify at The Hague about war crimes in Srebrenica, Bosnia, in support of the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia.