On November 16, Maria Codispoti, senior, committed to serve eight years as part of the Army National Guard. She will complete Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) training through NC State University, though primarily she will be attending Meredith College to earn her bachelor’s degree and play lacrosse.
While Codispoti had always been interested in the military, family involvement spurred her actual commitment. “What made me want to join at first was my sister,” said Codispoti, “…And then the opportunity came about for ROTC in college, which is like, you become an officer after your four years [in college]. And I wanted to make a career out of it, so I decided to just go for it.”
Joining ROTC in college will allow her to plan for her career while safely training at home in the United States. “And since I’m in the ROTC program, I’m non-deployable for four years of my eight years I’m serving,” said Codispoti.
The timeline Codispoti committed to will ultimately allow her to obtain a bachelor’s degree and automatically have a job for the first four years out of college.
Beyond simply knowing that she will one day be an officer in the National Reserve, Codispoti also already knows future weekly schedule. “ROTC is like a class in college so I’ll go to class once a week and then I’ll have [physical training] three times a week,” said Codispoti.
The opportunity to know specific college plans by the beginning of second quarter of senior year is a rare one. Codispoti may seem to have a certain advantage over her anxious classmates–and she does–but, nevertheless she still has a future to focus on. “I feel pretty set, [but] I mean it’s still…nerve wracking because I have…to go to basic training over the summer. And I’m graduating a little earlier than everyone else, so I have to get…all my stuff together before I even go there,” said Codispoti.
And although Codispoti will sacrifice graduation to achieve her dreams, not all is lost. “When I graduate basic training I’ll get to walk across the stage and…receive everything. And I’ll get to do the senior assembly…so I’ll get to…graduate, kind of,” said Codispoti.
Ultimately, as all of Leesville’s seniors follow different paths, senior years spent planning for the journeys will be different as well.
When asked if Codispoti believed if knowing future plans this far in advance was an advantage, she responded, “I think it’s nice that like you know before hand…what you doing with your life and stuff like that. But I think it depends [on] the person. But for me,…I like structure, I like knowing things…ahead of time and…planning my stuff out.”