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From cadets to 2nd lieutenants: Army ROTC salutes 8 at commissioning, pinning ceremony

Major Gen. Jason T. Evans, center, was the keynote speaker for the commissioning and bar ceremony. He joins the newly his new fellow officers.

Major Gen. Jason T. Evans, center, was the keynote speaker for the commissioning and bar pinning ceremony. He joins his new fellow officers.

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Lt. Col. Dexter M. Brookins, chair and professor of JSU’s Military Science, assists with one of the sweetest parts of the ceremony. He’s joined by Tashe’Wa N. Hill and Evans.

Lt. Col. Dexter M. Brookins, right, chair and professor of JSU’s Military Science, assists with one of the sweetest parts of the ceremony. He’s joined by Tashe’Wa N. Hill and Evans.

Keynote speaker Major Gen. Jason T. Evans told cadets during Jackson State University’s Army ROTC’s commissioning and pinning ceremony on Thursday, Dec. 7, that the world is complex and vulnerable, and it will need to rely on their leadership for guidance.

Meanwhile, Lt. Col. Dexter M. Brookins, chair and professor of JSU’s Military Science, praised Evans for his career service to the nation.

And, in his address  in the Student Center, Evans dispensed advice and thoughts to cadets about their future in the Army as newly minted second lieutenants embarking on the next chapter of their lives.

“The success of any organization depends on values, and the Army is no different,” Evans said. “The world … requires leadership, character and a commitment to the Army’s values of honor, integrity, respect, duty, selfless service, loyalty and personal courage. Disregard of these values will render you an ineffective leader.”

Brookins presents an official declaration to 2nd Lt. Eva N. Snell from the U.S. Army.

Brookins presents an official declaration from the U.S. Army  to 2nd Lt. Eva N. Snell.

Also, Evans emphasized that the most important charge of the Army is caring for the nation’s most precious resources: its people. To accomplish this task requires leadership, he said, because decision-makers must be able to effectively develop and guide teams if they desire to maintain trust among comrades and others.

Evans offered a litany of other required skills and character traits of Army personnel:

  • Must be able to demonstrate critical thinking, solve complex problems and communicate effectively
  •  Understand the destructive impact that hubris can have on unit cohesion and unity
  • Inspire and make recommendations to achieve common goals  to accomplish your mission
  • Study your craft because career and reputation are impacted by demonstrated competence, or the lack thereof
  • Have a vision to know what needs to happen, and set goals to achieve vision
  •  Understand your boss’ priorities and be prepared to execute them by ensuring actions are aligned with the superior officer
  • Embrace change by establishing consistent processes and metrics
  • Always take care of soldiers and their families, securing their welfare first
  •  Treat people like you want to be treated

The JSU Tiger Battalion consists of five graduates from JSU, detailing their commission:

  • Michael D. Green II, Mississippi National Guard
  • Ronald R. Mushi, active duty
  • Marquis D. Reed, Mississippi National Guard
  • Eva  N. Snell, active duty
  • Harrison A. Young, active duty

Two graduates are from Belhaven University

  • Roy L. Allen, U.S. Army Reserves
  • Tashe’Wa N. Hill, U.S. Army Reserve

One graduate represents Mississippi College

  • Joel R. Meek, active duty

Meanwhile, in his final remarks, Evans encouraged the honorees to remain steadfast in their upcoming journey, declaring they are now members of the “greatest team on earth, and that’s the Army.”

Second Lt. Ronald R. Mushi received his bachelor’s degree during the combined graduate and undergraduate ceremony on Friday, Dec. 8, in the Lee E. Williams Athletics and Assembly Center. (Photo by William Kelly III/JSU)

Second Lt. Ronald R. Mushi received his bachelor’s degree during the combined graduate and undergraduate ceremony on Friday, Dec. 8, in the Lee E. Williams Athletics and Assembly Center. (Photo by William Kelly III/JSU)