Story by: C/2nd Lieutenant Helwing Ortiz and C/2nd Lieutenant Journey Fisher
Photos by: C/Corporal Jonathan Ayele
The Alexandria City High School Army JROTC Program from 4th Brigade participated in the Association of the United States Army Conference (AUSA) on Monday, October 9th, 2023. We attended the conference in Washington D.C., donning their Class A Dress Blue uniforms. The objective of their visit was to gain exposure to various aspects of the military, including new technologies, vehicles, weapons, operations, and other intriguing subjects. The conference provided two sections where the Cadets were allowed to explore freely.
In Section One, which focused on the mechanical aspects of the Army, the Cadets had the opportunity to interact with experts and armed forces personnel manning numerous stands. Here, they could examine airplane parts, weapon components, vehicles, combat gear, and other related equipment. This section offered a unique chance for the Cadets to witness a different side of the Army.
Section Two concentrated on the technological realm of the Army. It showcased many computer and AI based technologies; virtual reality and robots along with explanations of weapon and vehicle systems’ functionalities. This section showcased the vast diversity within the military, leaving many Cadets astonished by its extent. The access to these booths and personnel provided an opportunity for the Cadets and other attendees to grasp the extensive scope of opportunities offered by the Armed Services.
Later, the Cadets attended a luncheon hosted by various colleges with ROTC programs. During this meal, the Cadets had the chance to observe the functions and operations of these programs firsthand. The luncheon proved to be an enlightening experience for the Cadets, as they dined and gained insights into the functioning of the ROTC programs.
The AUSA conference also welcomed distinguished guests, including Major General Antonio “Andy” Munera and service members from around the globe. We were also greeted with the Army band Down Rangers. The presence of these esteemed individuals added further value to the Cadets’ experience. By the end of the event, the Cadets could reflect on an enjoyable and educational outing, where they had the opportunity to broaden their understanding of the Army and its diverse backgrounds.