June 1, 2015 --
More than 30 members of the Dougherty Comprehensive High School, Albany, Georgia, Marine Corps Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps assembled aboard Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany for the first of a three-day Cadet Leadership Camp, June 1.
Their first event began at the Base Theater. The cadets received a welcome aboard brief and motivational talk by MCLB Albany’s top three uniformed leaders. The leaders shared their personal journeys about their time in the Marine Corps. They also encouraged the cadets to learn from each other, ask questions of each of the leaders as well as the other active-duty and retired Marines here.
Lt. Col. James C. Carroll III, commanding officer, MCLB Albany, spoke openly about his challenges growing up in a single-parent household and how he overcame them to get where he is today.
"I can relate to many of you because I've been where some of you are, but I used my situation as motivation,” Carroll said. “If you want success, it has to start with you — it must come from within. It must come from the heart."
The cadets’ Marine instructor, Sgt. Maj. Stephen Martin, portrayed the annual camp as a way to motivate the cadets, “to develop a sense of confidence (in them), help pump them up to be in the program and offer them a challenge.”
Also during their first day, the cadets tested their physical and mental process on the base’s obstacle course.
Highest ranking cadet and 12th grader, Col. Alexis Calloway, noted she fared better this time on the obstacle course, completing three quarters of it.
“I did better than my 9th grade (year) because (then) I couldn’t do half of it,” Calloway said. “I hoped to accomplish the course itself and learn more about the military’s physical activities.”
Hoping to enlist in the Army and become a medical assistant, the 17-year-old said the camp will teach her "about leadership and how to take command.”
Former cadet, Lt. Col. Alven Conley, just graduated high school, hopes to enlist in the Marine Corps soon and become an aviation electronics technician. He pushed himself through the obstacle course and encouraged the cadets.
“The sergeant major is helping me to join the Corps (and) I want to repay that (by) helping out with the leadership camp,” Conley said. “If you want to be among the top, do what you need to do — take charge without anyone having to tell you what to do.”
During their three-day camp, the cadets also participated in a combat fitness test, toured Marine Depot Maintenance Command/Production Plant Albany and received a martial arts demonstration.