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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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AFROTC will show appreciation, strengthen outreach at UTEP Appreciation Day

In gratitude to their cross-town members, New Mexico State University's Air Force ROTC cadets will travel to the University of Texas at El Paso campus Thursday, Oct. 28, for UTEP Appreciation Day.

The visit will allow NMSU cadets to gain an appreciation of some of the minor obstacles UTEP students face through participation in the program, and remind the UTEP students of the admiration NMSU's ROTC has for the small sacrifices they make for their program.

"This is our first-ever attempt to experience AFROTC from the perspective of a cross-town student," Air Force ROTC Lt. Col. Stephen Groll said. "This is a great way to show our appreciation for these students, as it takes a lot of personal commitment for them to take part."

NMSU has had an active cross-town agreement with UTEP since 1979, which allows UTEP students to participate in AFROTC at the NMSU campus. The cadets travel to NMSU twice weekly to attend AFROTC classes and participate in Leadership Laboratory with the entire cadet corps.

The visit will also help increase ROTC's footprint on UTEP's campus in the hopes of increasing enrollment and strengthening the collaboration with the university.

"Because UTEP has an Army ROTC, a lot of students think that is their only option. We want the UTEP campus to be aware of the alternative they have to join NMSU's Air Force ROTC," said Lt. Col. Groll.

UTEP President Diana Natalicio and Interim Dean of the College of Liberal Arts Patricia Witherspoon will make opening remarks and Lt. Col. Groll will address the present ROTC members at 3:20 p.m. at the UGLC building in Room 346, before they begin with the day's objectives on first aid and self-aid and buddy care training.

Since 2008, ROTC's UTEP enrollment numbers have grown from two to 16. AFROTC hopes that eventually the number of students participating from UTEP will grow large enough to have cadet staff and instructors travel to UTEP each week.