Tag Archives: AFJROTC

The Progression of an Exhibition Drill Soloist

Chris Scanlan is today’s Guest writer. Thank you, Chris!

Scanlan and team 2015My name is Chris Scanlan, I’m a Cadet Captain of The Lebanon High School AFJROTC Unit in Ohio. I’ve been drilling, in every category of drill: Regulation, Inspection, Color Guard, and Exhibition, for four years now. I’m the Co-Drill Team Commander for my drill team, that won state for the past seven years and we are currently leading the circuit for state points. {The image above is of Chris and his teammates in 2015 showing their numerous trophies- DrillMaster]

What got me into drill was basically watching my brother perform drill when I was in 8th grade. I was at a local competition as a fan; I remember watching my brother competing in the armed regulation event. I remember watching everyone being in step together, staying sharp, crisp, and poised. I said, “This is amazing!” and was hooked from there on out! What kept me involved in drill was the Class of 2015 Drillers on the team. With 11 seniors, including myself, we always had each other’s’ back. Through all the losses, arguments, faults, blood, sweat, and tears given for this sport, I would go back and perform with them in a heartbeat. They truly support me like no one else.

My heart belongs to exhibition drill. I’ve work so hard to master my craft and I love every minute of it.  In my four-year drill career, I’ve managed to pull out 10 first place solos, 2 second place solos, 2 third place solos, three first place tandems, two second place tandems, and two third place tandems. I’ve also qualified for The World Drill Championships for both solo and tandem. During my freshman year, exhibition drill was frowned upon on the team. “We’re not cheerleaders!” Is what I’ve been told, numerous times, regarding exhibition. While they found it unorthodox of the hand slapping, rifle twirling, and random chants during performances, I’ve always had a greater appreciation towards it. I made it my goal to leave Lebanon High School, with people having an appreciation towards exhibition drill. As of now, I do believe my goal has been not only achieved, but exceeded. I have freshman drillers wanting to learn ex. They would always tell me how amazing I am and how they want to drill like me! After hearing stuff like that, I know I did my job and I couldn’t be happier.

John Marshall, The DrillMaster, has heavily influenced my drill in numerous way. I remember listening to his audio critique for my MIODC 3 video and just being in awe. He gave me a, “new eye” for exhibition drill. I remember the biggest thing he taught me was layered movement: using multiple layers of your drill to perform, whether it is, upper body/footwork, footwork/ torso work, ETC… He brought the idea that there is more to the art of exhibition drill than just, “spinning the rifle.”  I rely quite a bit on Mr. Marshall to give me feedback on my performances today as well as over the years. His knowledge and eye for drill is impeccable and can’t be touched. After every solo performance, I always send my video to him and ask for a critique, and he delivers! He never leaves me disappointed, whether it’s with something I couldn’t see that hindered my drill, or a 42-minute long audio critique, I love it! Mr. Marshall is the first person I go to for critiques and it will stay like that for a while. I give a big thanks to you, The DrillMaster, for increasing my growth in drill. I wouldn’t be both a great performer, and a knowledgeable driller!

My long termgoals will be competing at The NHSDTC 2015 solo and dual event this year, with my dual partner Jonathan Wurzelbacher.  After high school is over, I will be attending Wright State University, where I’ll be majoring in marketing. I will join their AFROTC program and most likely join their drill team. I hope to be able to coach a newly formed drill team, while being in college, to help inspire the young drillers, in the same manner of how I was inspired.

Here are Chris’s critiques:

DrillMaster at Daytona Nationals 2013

National High School Drill Team Championships 2013, exhibition drill, regulation drill, color guard, color team
National High School Drill Team Championships 2013

The National High School Drill Team Championships were a big hit yet again! Drillers and teams from all over the country, Guam and Hawaii came to showoff their skills. Some teams left with trophies, others left with great pride in knowing they had done their best.

The picture at left is of me having a long and very good discussion about everything under the sun with a drill team coach. We will be working together in the future in honor guard and drill team endeavors.

 

Daytona Nationals 2013 Fans, exhibition drill, regulation drill, color guard, color team, fancy dril
Daytona Nationals 2013 DrillMaster Fans

The two gentlemen in the picture at right (C/Lt Cdr Jacob Lindsey and C/Lt JG Tevion Gray) are from St Louis, Missouri and attend the Cleveland Jr. Naval Academy. What’s remarkable about these two fine cadets is that they are on their school’s drill team and the team was not doing very well at competitions, this is until they bought Exhibition Drill for the Military Drill Team- both volumes. Interestingly, once they read both of my books, according to Cadet Lindsey, they began to have a better understanding as to what exhibition drill was about and the team began to sweep all of their drill meets in SY12/13! Yes, they swept the drill meets. As I constantly say, education is key- and this proves my point!

John Jay High School AFJROTC
Now owns a copy of each one of my books that I had available at my table, all except The DrillMaster: Filling in the Gaps, because I had just published it on the Friday before. MSgt Harwell, stopped by after Step II had a good rehearsal and purchased the books. I had the distinct opportunity to pray for my brother in Christ and I pray that he finds joy and contentment as he moves on in life.

I’m looking forward to seeing you all next year at competitions around the country and then in Daytona!

National High School Drill Team Championships, exhibition drill, fancy drill, freestyle drill, regulation drill, color guard, color team, john jay high school, afjrotc, njrotc, mcjtrotc, ajrotc, drill competition, drill meet

JROTC Class Regulation Drill Sequences

World Drill Association, drill team, squad drill, regulation drill
World Drill Association Logo

JROTC Class Regulation Drill Sequences
Each JROTC has an annual inspection and for that inspection the inspector watches each class (platoon or flight) go through a sequence of commands. Some JROTC units use a standardized sequence from a drill competition and some use a sequence created for first-year JROTC cadets.

I decided to create score sheets for the latter based on the World Drill Association Adjudication system.

Army JROTC Squad Drill Overall Effect Score Sheet

Navy/Marine Corps/Coast Guard JROTC Overall Effect Score Sheet*

Air Force Overall Effect Score Sheet

JROTC Regulation Drill Sequence Movement Score Sheet

JROTC Regulation Drill Sequence Equipment Score Sheet

*I could not find any kind of sequence that is mandatory for NJROTC/MCJROTC, but I did find an annual inspection letter with some guidance, so I included that here.

If you desire to use any of these score sheets for your unit, please do so, you have my permission. You may not make changes to the sheets, however. To learn more about the World Drill Association Adjudication  System, click here. If you’d like any changes to be made or want a set of score sheets made for your unit/competition, please don’t hesitate to let me know!

AJROTC, MCJROTC, NJROTC, AFJROTC, CG JLP

The Cadet Series: American Military Cadets

A little-known program, but quickly gaining more and more exposure, is the American Military Cadet Corps (AMCC). It is just like US Navy Sea Cadets or Civil Air Patrol, but for the Army and like Sea Cadets, USAC offers hands-on real-world training just like Soldiers get. Pardon the expression but, USAC is Army JROTC on steroids.

Strength and Honor!
This motto is introduced to every cadet and adult volunteer, and they men it. Unlike the other non-JROTC cadet programs, AMCC cadre (adult volunteers) are brought on board as officers OR enlisted. At the time of this writing, I happen to be a AMCC Staff Sergeant (SSG). Why go the enlisted route? It’s up to the individual. Many who are already retired enlisted, choose to remain enlisted since that is where they can make the biggest impact- working day-to-day with the cadets. That is not to say that AMCC officers do not have an impact, but the enlisted side is usually more hands-on on a daily basis.

A Navy History?
Yes, AMCC, (formerly Army Cadets or USAC) actually began as a Navy-based program and then became the American Cadet Alliance which had Navy, Marines and Army cadets.

From the AMCC website:

The American Military Cadet Corps (AMCC) traces its heritage to the early days of the 20th century, making us the oldest nationwide Cadet program still existing today.  Our history and culture are steeped in the oldest traditions of Cadetting.  In those days, a group of veterans chose to create a military-style youth organization to give the young men of their community a chance for adventure.  The program was Navy based and taught boys good citizenship and patriotism.  This idea was the foundation of both the Boy Scouts of America and the American Cadet Alliance (ACA), the predecessor to the AMCC.

The American Cadet Alliance was founded as Colonel Cody’s Boy Scouts, by CAPT James H.C. Smyth on April 10, 1909, at the First Presbyterian Church in Manhattan, NY. April 10 is celebrated as the birthday of the Corps.

In 1911, the organization split into two organizations:  the Boy Scouts of America and the American Naval and Marine Scouts.  On Aug. 16, 1927, the American Naval and Marine Scouts was incorporated in New York state as the New York Junior Naval Militia.  Early in 1929, the organization split and Commodore Smyth and a number of senior officers left and on Feb. 19, 1929, incorporated the Junior Naval Reserve.

A Unique Situation
Unlike Sea Cadets, Young Marines and the CAP, AMCC is also part of Forest Hill Military Academy a full-time boarding and day school located in Millersburg, KY. Read more here.

Got Training?
They have training! Take a look at the summer 2015 training schedule: (contact me for special “DrillMaster Reduced Fees”!)

Troop Handlers Course ……………………………………. Jun 14-20
Basic Cadet Training – Session 1……………………… Jun 21- Jul 4
Basic Cadet Training – Session 2 …………………….. Jul 5 – 18
Basic Leaders Course …………………………………………Jul 5 – 18
Cadet Combat Engineers Course …………………… Jul 5 – 25
Cadet Ranger Challenge ………………………………….. Jul 5-25
Cadet Ranger School ………………………………………… Jul 26 – Aug 16
Tactical Leaders Course …………………………………… Jul 19 – Aug 2
Cadet Equestrian Program (NEW!!) ……………… July 26 – Aug 2
Cadet Military Police Academy……………………….. Aug 2 – 16
Cadet Joint Service Honor Guard Academy …. Aug 2 – 16
Cadet Military Combatives Program ……………… Aug 2 – 8
Cadet Medic School (NEW!!) …………………………… Aug 2 – 8
Cadet Airborne Jump School (NEW!!) …………… Aug 9-15

Cadet Airborne School. Watch the AMCC site for updates!