By Cody Stuart
Recently the government cut the budget that the ROTC programs receive, causing significant strain on the program at Olivet.
Patrick Hamel, a Contractor for the Department of Military Science, said that no cadets have been expelled because of the government budget cuts.
“The government spending cuts really haven’t affected the recruits,” he said. “The real pressure from the cuts is on the staff rather than the cadets.”
He went on to explain that the cadets would not be sent from the program because of government spending and that they are only expelled in extreme circumstances.
ROTC Special Projects Manager Frank Hayden mentioned that government spending cuts have been a problem for ROTC in the past as well.
He said they have always been an issue for the department, “but not as much. This is definitely a big cut, if not the biggest cut in quite some time.”
He is confident, however, that the government cuts will have only a minimal effect on the “standards of excellence” that the Olivet ROTC program has worked to cultivate over the years.
When asked about the long-term impact of this spending cut on the recruitment of cadets, as well as the overall wellbeing of the program, Hayden said not to worry about it.
“The Army is really switching gears and is focusing on quality versus quantity and Olivet Nazarene University Roaring Tiger Battalion produces some of the finest quality Commissioned Officers in the Army,” Hayden said.
Hamel echoed this statement, saying that Olivet prides itself on upholding the values of the Army, “What we produce here at Olivet is based on solid Army morals.”
The spending cuts, while they cannot endanger the student’s well-being in the ROTC program, can however, endanger the scholarships available to students in the future.
Loyola University has already noted that the average scholarship for ROTC has dropped, and that further budget cuts may reduce this even further.
According to a White House report, roughly $10 billion will be cut from the military budget as the armed forces reduced their size since the conflict in Afghanistan winds to a close.
While there is not any definitive numbers yet, Olivet ROTC newcomers can likely expect to see fewer benefits than those in years past.