Skip To Top NavigationSkip To ContentSkip To Section NavigationSkip To Footer
Bulldog News

291 high school cadets graduate from SC State’s JROTC STEM Camp

Author: Allie Harris-Beeks; Communications Specialist|Published: June 17, 2024|All News, Student News

JROTC STEM Camp Graduation
JROTC cadets celebrate JROTC STEM Camp graduation.

ORANGEBURG, S.C. – The voices of junior cadets rang throughout the South Carolina State University Martin Luther King Jr. Auditorium on Friday, June 14, as they marched in, singing military hymns to commemorate their graduation from JROTC STEM Camp.

Even though this was only the third-annual JROTC STEM Camp presented by the SC State ROTC program, the camp had a large turnout.  

Junior cadet waves JROTC STEM Camp flag.
Junior cadet waves JROTC STEM Camp flag.
“This is my second year coming, and I feel like I got a lot more out of it. We did a lot of hands-on STEM activities, which I enjoyed a lot because I work well with my hands,” Cadet Grayson Roberts said.

Roberts is an honor cadet from the U.S. Army Alpha company. He is a senior from Cleveland High School in Clayton, North Carolina.

“Overall, it was a great experience. I learned a lot of leadership skills as well as STEM skills and I would rate this camp a 10 out of 10,” Roberts said.

At Friday’s graduation ceremony, 291 JROTC cadets from 27 high schools across the states of North Carolina and South Carolina received certificates and were congratulated on their diligence and hard work throughout the camp. Honor cadets were awarded medallions.

Junior cadets received STEM lessons and participated in activities provided by SC State’s College of Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics & Transportation (STEM-T). Cadets also created STEM projects and received hands-on military, archery and water safety training.

Military and STEM professionals from various organizations visited the camp to inform students on their professions to help give them ideas on what they could in their careers.

The cadets also had the opportunity to visit different STEM-related sites around the state including the Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC) in Orangeburg and the South Carolina State Museum in Columbia, South Carolina.

“The camp was very informative and provided me the opportunity to learn more about electrical engineering, which is my main focus and the module that I participated in,” said Taylor Lewis, distinguished superior cadet and battalion commander. “We learned about circuits, we learned about ultrasonic sound, and things of that nature.”

Junior cadets featured in article.
(Left to right) Ayreana Speight, Taylor Lewis, Grayson Roberts.
Lewis is a junior from Richland Northeast High School in Columbia, South Carolina, who has a keen interest in STEM and learning about new technology.

“The camp also provided me with hands-on experience and leadership experience and I’m very grateful to be here. I look forward to coming back next year,” Lewis said.

SC State’s ROTC program educated the cadets on scholarships offered by the program and how it can benefit their futures at SC State and in the military. The camp also offered a university student panel for cadets to ask questions and get more information on what it is like to be a college student and cadet on campus.

The goal of this program is to educate JROTC cadets on the opportunities and benefits of the SC State’s ROTC and STEM-T programs, while also increasing the number of cadets who are willing to commit to the ROTC program.  

“It was really fun. It taught me a lot – it taught me about what I want to do in life. It taught me leadership skills too,” Ayreana Speight said.

Speight is a platoon sergeant and senior from Southern Lee High School, Sanford North Carolina, who plans to start her academic career and join the ROTC program at SC State.

“SC State is my top school, so I do plan to come here next year. I love the people and how they come together, and I love the HBCU (Historically Black College and University) atmosphere. I want to do cyber security – that’s what I plan to major in,” she said.