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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

New ROTC wing for fall ’10

Lisa Beth Earle / Arizona Daily Wildcat

Cochise Residence Hall and South Hall
Lisa Beth Earle
Lisa Beth Earle / Arizona Daily Wildcat Cochise Residence Hall and South Hall

Students in the UA ROTC program will have the option to live in a ROTC-focused dorm wing starting in the 2010-11 school year.

Residence Life and ROTC announced that part of Cochise Residence Hall will be reserved for students in any of the four ROTC branches.

The project was motivated by the experience of students.

“”We noticed that our ROTC students had a different lifestyle than non-participants,”” said Jon Wheeler, assistant director for Residence Education.

The schedule of ROTC students requires that they wake up early several times per week, often hours before their peers. This difference in sleep cycles can cause conflict for ROTC students whose roommates are not in the program.

This rigorous schedule is even more problematic for incoming ROTC freshmen who are denied on-campus housing.

Residence Life and ROTC officers worked together to find a solution.

“”We came together and said, ‘This is an issue we’re having. How are we going to fix it?'”” Wheeler said.

The resulting theme-wing allows ROTC students to live with other members of the program. The goal is to give students a community of people with similar interests and experiences and build camaraderie throughout the ROTC program.

“”We wanted to get like-minded individuals in one place,”” said Major Vernal Fulton, enrollment and scholarship advisor for the Army ROTC. “”They are able to help each other out, motivate each other.””

Matt Henricks, a mechanical engineering freshman, said this theme-wing would have helped him adjust to college life as an ROTC student.

“”It would’ve been helpful getting used to college life mixed with military life,”” Henricks said. He noted that getting up early for physical training and being held accountable by ROTC officers has set his freshman experience apart from other students’.

Henricks said he would have lived in the wing if it had been available at the start of his freshman year but will not live there next year.

“”I’ve already gotten comfortable in Gila (Residence Hall),”” Henricks said. “”It’s kind of nice being away from the military for a couple of hours, at least.””

Cochise was chosen for its close proximity to South Hall, where the ROTC program is based.

Residence Life reserved between 25 and 30 beds for male ROTC students and 15 to 20 beds for female ROTC students. Wheeler noted that more beds may be available based on student interest.

The opportunities associated with the wing are expected to develop over time.

“”This year is the foundation. In years to come, we will add aspects to the program,”” Wheeler said.

About half of the allocated beds have been filled so far. Residence Life expects that number to increase as it continues to assign housing and the program is advertised during new student orientation.

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