Students enlist in military, gain means to attend college

While some students are struggling to find ways to pay for the climbing cost of college tuition, the military is providing another option. Seniors Kaitlyn Harris and Matthew Greer both received $83,000 checks to be used for college through the American GI bill for committing to the military for at least three years post high school graduation.

“The army wants students to enlist and serve their time,” Greer said. “The bill started during World War II to get more people to join the military. They give enlistees money for college and once their term is complete they can go to school and get skills for the workplace.”

Many students devote their high school years to playing sports, participating band or  singing in the choir, but students who devote their life to the military frequently go unnoticed.

“I knew that the army had a lot of benefits for me instead of doing sports,” Harris said. “I don’t think I would’ve kept playing sports [after high school]. I like the military and it’s something that I plan to stick with.”

When making a big decision like this, students look to others in their lives to help them with the process.

“My recruiter inspired me the most,” Harris said. “He never really pressured me into going into the army. Everyone was telling me that I shouldn’t go into the military because of the risk involved, but he helped me see the military in a different way.”

Under the supervision of Major James Boydston, Greer has been able to improve his military skills through JROTC, which has shaped and trained him to be the person he is today.

“[Greer] has a very unique insight into the things we instruct in leadership,” Boydston said. “And a very unique application of that insight and his interpretation of what we teach”

Harris is proud of herself for receiving the check because she is able to live up to her expectations by going to college and joining the military.

“I was happy whenever I received the check,” Harris said. “It means that I am able to have a future after the military [by attending college].”