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Retired U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sergeant Bruce Kenney addresses cadets at Bob Jones High School during his inspection assessment of the unit. CONTRIBUTED

Bob Jones AFJROTC secures top rating in comprehensive inspection

MADISON – Achieving the highest rating for a unit, the Air Force Junior ROTC or AFJROTC Cadet Corps at Bob Jones High School earned an overall inspection assessment rating of “Exceeds Standards.”

Cadets Manfred Rosero, a sophomore, and Shaniya Jacobs-Lanier, a senior, were awarded “Top Performer” certificates and ribbons for their outstanding and unwavering dedication to the unit.

“Congratulations on a job well done! We’re proud of each and every Blue Knight cadet!” Dr. Maj. Melissa M. Lacey said. Lacey is Senior Aerospace Science Instructor at Bob Jones. Retired Chief Master Sgt. Ellis Clark coaches AFJROTC cadets for archery, drill, honor guard and marksmanship.

Leaders schedule a unit inspection every three years. On Nov. 15, retired U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sergeant Bruce Kenney conducted the inspection. Kennedy is Region 8 Director of HQ AFJROTC at Maxwell AFB.

All day at Bob Jones, Kenney inspected uniforms, drill performance, regulation compliance, financial management, classroom instruction, inventory accuracy, extracurricular activities, community service and cadet leadership. “He recognized many areas for exceeding standards, including cadet ownership, cadet unit mission briefing, and cadet drill sequence,” Lacey said.

“Chief Master Sgt. Ellis Clark and I are overjoyed to receive the highest rating awarded for AFJROTC unit evaluations,” Lacey said. “However, we were not surprised with the outcome of the inspection. We, along with the cadets, worked really hard to ensure that we not only met all requirements but knew with our stellar AFJROTC program at Bob Jones that we exceeded standards in several areas,” Lacey said.

During the inspection, Capt. Jackson Walker Ford, a Bob Jones senior, worked as Inspector General and coordinated most cadet-run aspects. “(My) biggest task was to articulate the cadet briefing presented to Chief Master Sergeant Bruce Kenny. That included delegating cadets to present slides and setting up dry-runs so we could refine our presentation skills.”

In addition, Ford focused on the self-assessment checklist that is logistically based and required for all units. The checklist has 10 sections, ranging from equipment management to unit operations. “I had to memorize all aspects of said checklist, in case of questioning from Chief Master Sgt. Kenny. It was quite tedious; nonetheless, we met all standards without a problem,” Ford said.

To earn the high grade “by being leaders we’ve become but also leaders we’ve been molded into with the help of our amazing instructors,” Ford said. “We couldn’t have earned this honor without Major Melissa Lacey and Chief Master Sergeant Ellis Clark. They constantly strive to make us into better cadets — more importantly, better citizens every single day.”

“I personally enjoy the sense of community that surrounds our unit. No matter what you need, someone is willing to step up (with) a helping hand. We pride ourselves on being an open and accepting corps. No matter who or what you identify as, we will accept you with a smile and open arms,” Ford said.

“We (cadets) set ourselves apart by investing time and emotion into every cadet so they can do the same to someone outside our unit and make an impact no matter where they are or who they’re with. That’s why I enjoy AFJROTC,” Ford said.

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