“...It is a proud privilege to be a soldier – a good soldier … [with] discipline,
self-respect, pride in his unit and his country, a high sense of duty and obligation
to comrades and to his superiors, and a self confidence born of demonstrated ability.”
― George S. Patton Jr.
What makes the Cadet stand out among their peers?
CDT Carlton is a born leader. In the four semesters he has spent with the SLU Army
ROTC extension program has continued to maintain the highest GPA in his cohort, while
also maintaining the highest APFT and ACFT scores, and the highest rank in the class.
He is currently in the MS III class, and serves as a Cadet Platoon
Sergeant for Lion Company and the class leader for the MS IIIs. He has always volunteered
for recruiting events, and is a member of both the SLU Army ROTC Color Guard and
the Push-Up Platoon. He currently serves as the SLU Army ROTC Outside of his role as a Cadet,
he finds time to manage his own 18 Wheeler Truck detailing business which services local truck
dealerships in his home town of Walker, Louisiana. He volunteers with the Baptist Collegiate
Ministry on SLU’s campus regularly and is an active member in the group. In addition to all this,
he serves as a board member of the SLU Army ROTC Student Organization, an organization
which provides MWR events to our cadets, and works to actively recruit new students to our
program and bring awareness to our organization.
Why did you join Army ROTC?And what are your plans for your Army career?
I initially took the Army ROTC class my Freshman year of college due to my interest
in the military
as a whole. The next semester, I enlisted with the Louisiana Army National Guard and decided
that I wanted to join Army ROTC upon completion of Basic Training and Advanced Individual
Training. After initially sitting down with my recruiter and understanding that I could serve as an
Officer upon completion of Army ROTC, I realized it would be a waste not to compete for a
contract or Minuteman Scholarship. I knew I wanted to serve for at least the full twenty years
and pursue earning a commission. I had heard about OCS, but it seemed inefficient not to try
and not knock out my degree and commissioning source at the same time. I hope to be a
Blackhawk Pilot with the Louisiana Army National Guard’s TAOG after commissioning. My long
term goal is to continue serving my state and nation honorably in the part time status, and I
aspired to one day have the honor of commanding the 1-244 th Aviation Battalion.
What, or who, motivates you as a leader?
For starters, it is always better to lead than follow; though I will caveat that by
acknowledging that a good leader must also know when to follow. My greatest motivation
to be a leader is rooted in my faith in Jesus Christ. I was taught from an early age
that a Christian must lead in all aspects of life.I want my life to be are flection of what I claim to believe, so I am constantly looking for ways to improve
myself, involve myself, and help others. In doing all this, I believe that I can show the
love my God gives me to others, and at the same time I can praise him and return the favor as best as
all He has given me.
How do you manage ROTC and your other college commitments?
I take a “zero procrastination” approach to my commitments in order to ensure I have time to accomplish everything. Classes, BCM commitments, ROTC Training and Drill Weekends with my National Guard Unit (1-244 th AV, 204 th TAOG) are easy to manage because I actively track when they are coming and builds my study times, detailing commitments and additional gym sessions around them. My philosophy is that if there is something to be done, I want to accomplish it as soon as possible to leave room for the unexpected things that are coming, be they work or pleasure related.
Why did you Decide to Lead?
I mentioned before that there is the Faith based aspect, as well as a desire to not
be labeled “a follower”. This is not to say that I couldn’t also have been an NCO
or pursued becoming a Warrant Officer to be a leader. I believe that everyone in the
military is expected and trained to be a leader in some capacity. In my case, I knew
that I wanted to lead from the front one day as a Commander or First Sergeant, and
possibly at higher levels later. My brother was enlisted in the active component, and I had
always appreciated the examples I had heard him mention from his senior leadership. I realized
that while knocking out my degree I could also pursue a commission and it seemed like a no
brainer. I am really looking forward to being in a higher level role that allows me to positively
care for others and help effect change for them.
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