Fall 2017 Corps Review    |    Back

Beth Demyanovich ’17 operates heavy machinery as part of the Field Engineering and Readiness Laboratory at the Air Force Academy.

Beth Demyanovich ’17 stands on a bulldozer.
Beth Demyanovich ’17 operates heavy machinery as part of the Field Engineering and Readiness Laboratory at the Air Force Academy.

By Cadet Noah Harrison ’20

Summer 2017 was another busy summer for the cadets in Air Force ROTC Detachment 875. 

After their second year, cadets attend field training, a highly demanding leadership course with both an in-garrison environment and a mock expeditionary setting. 

Because of the training provided by both the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets and Detachment 875, our cadets not only finished, but they let the rest of the nation know that Detachment 875 is the “Best Alive.” The 58 cadets who completed training this summer earned 41 awards, including seven Distinguished Graduates, three Superior Performers, one Warrior Spirit, two Physical Fitness Awards, and 20 Cadet Training Assistant (CTA) recommendations. 

A select few cadets returned in different positions. Cadets Joseph Bahret ’18 and Natalie Rosas ’18 were selected to be CTAs for a 31-day period, which included a week of specialized training so they could better oversee cadet training. 

“I was grateful to be mentored by a wide range of Air Force officers throughout my time as a CTA,” said Rosas. “It was also great to be given the chance to shape cadets into POC [Professional Officer Course] material and produce future leaders for the Air Force.”

Cadets and cadre from Detachment 875 take a group photo after the Air Force Marathon at Wright Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio.

Cadets and cadre from Detachment 875 take a group photo after the Air Force Marathon.
Cadets and cadre from Detachment 875 take a group photo after the Air Force Marathon at Wright Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio.

Aside from field training, cadets were selected for four other training opportunities this summer. 

Cadet Noah White ’19 rode in a T-38 with the 192nd Operations Group based at Langley Air Force Base, Virginia. Before the flight, he had a day of training focused on what to expect, how to make it through the flight problem-free, and what to do in an emergency. Cadets also received a briefing on the “mission” they would be flying. White’s flight was performing an air-to-air combat mission against F-22 fighter jets.

“The size of Detachment 875 provides incredible opportunities for cadets to see more of the operational Air Force and what goes into planning a mission,” White said. “I would have never imagined being able to fly in a formation with F-22 fighters over the summer. I received valuable hands-on experience with Air Force personnel that gave me a new perspective of our Air Force.”

Cadet John Gogal ’18 attended the three-week Expeditionary Survival and Evasion Training program at the Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The training had four categories: Military Operations in Urban Terrain; Combat Arms Training and Maintenance; Patrol; and Survival Evasion Resistance and Escape. 

“I was able to learn about new training methods and the importance of adapting leadership styles to better fit a group,” Gogal said. “We learned how important it is to motivate your team when things get tough and that in the end to always strive to better your situation.”

Cadet Beth Demyanovich ’17, was one of 16 cadets nationwide chosen to attend Field Engineering and Readiness Laboratory (FERL) at the Air Force Academy. This program is hosted by the academy’s Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and run by highly skilled active-duty and reserve technicians. Cadets learn to pour concrete, assemble steel structures, operate heavy machinery, pave a road, and more. 

“FERL allowed me to see civil engineering in the Air Force through the eyes of active-duty airmen and definitely increased my interest in the career field,” Demyanovich said. “Being able to work with the academy allowed me to relate to other cadets and see that we are similar in a lot of ways. I also found the amount of hands on time with NCOs invaluable, as they are the driving force of our Air Force.

Project GO is another experience available. The Department of Defense initiative is meant to promote critical language education, studying abroad, and intercultural dialogue opportunities. Cadet Matt Krusiec ’19 traveled to Guilin, China, this summer.

“Without Project GO, I would never have had the opportunity to study abroad. It changed my perspective in how other cultures live when compared to ours,” Krusiec said. “Through Project GO, I am more aware of new customs that I feel will prepare me for international relations as an Air Force officer.”

After a very productive summer, Detachment 875 jumped straight into an amazing semester. In week one, we were honored to have Medal of Honor recipient U.S. Army Col. Walter “Joe” Marm Jr. (retired) speak and present Cadet Matthew Sherburne ’17 a $5,000 scholarship from the Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation and the Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association Educational Foundation. 

In September, cadets went to the annual Air Force Marathon at Wright Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio. A group of 30, made up of both cadets and cadre, participated in events ranging from a 10K to a full marathon. Cadets also visited the National Museum of the United States Air Force.

“When we were there I got to meet a lot of Detachment 875 alumni who are still serving in the Air Force,” said Cadet Sydney Tinker ’20. “The Air Force Marathon gave me a unique experience where I not only met a broad range of airmen from around the country, but also pushed myself to new levels during the race.”

The following week, the Robert Femoyer Service Squadron hosted the Aviation Wall of Fame ceremony, and we were honored to induct Gen. Carlton D. Everhart II ’83 as the newest member of this proud group. 

Summer 2017 was the busiest and most productive summer any of our cadets can remember. Most of what our cadets accomplished was possible only because Detachment 875 cadets stepped forward and successfully competed for these opportunities at a national level. Well done, Detachment 875.