Cadet Whittington and MC Mortar Board receive national awards

-Megan Cole, Reporter

Mississippi College is proud to announce two awards being received this October. One of MC’s Army ROTC cadets, Grant Whittington, received the National Honors Award, and MC’s Cap & Gown chapter of Mortar Board received the Silver Torch Award.

Grant Whittington, a senior kinesiology major, is an award-winning cadet of Mississippi College’s Army ROTC. After taking part in the Leadership Training Course at Fort Knox, Ky., with approximately 1,500 other cadets, Whittington ranked as the nation’s number one cadet and was awarded the Nation’s Honors in Army ROTC.

“It surprised me,” Whittington smiled. “My instructors knew, and they thought I knew, but I had never heard about the award. I didn’t know what it was.

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Whittington shared advice to incoming cadets and students. “Outwork everybody and have a strong hard work ethic.” Whittington explained that this was a big part of what enabled him to make it to the top.

Being competitive is a part of his personality, Whittington also revealed. He wants to win and he “has” to win, but that comes after following what God wants and what’s in His will. According to Whittington, none of this was in his original plan. God had something else in store, and it was the Lord who brought him to his current outstanding position as the nation’s top cadet.

At graduation in May 2015, Whittington will receive his 1st Salute from none other than his own father, a U.S. Marine himself. Whittington shared that it is what he looks forward to the most out of his adventures in ROTC and the Army.

Another area of campus being nationally recognized is MC’s chapter of Mortar Board. Mortar Board is a national honor society that began its recognition of college seniors in 1918. The society provides a variety of opportunities to its members and promotes service in colleges, universities, and communities. According to the 2014 Mortar Board Media Release, 24 collegiate chapters earned the Gold Torch Award and 67 chapters were honored with the Silver Torch Award this year. Jenni Szolwinski, of the Mortar Board National College Senior Honor Society, shared that the chapters given the Silver Torch Award were selected based on a set of standards and deadlines.

After MC excelled by ranking amongst the highest Mortar Board chapters at this summer’s Mortar Board Conference in Atlanta, the chapter became well recognized for its many accomplishments. In addition to meeting all basic requirements, the chapter excelled in displaying the major ideals of scholarship, including leadership and committed service. The MC chapter’s punctual execution and commitment was the last step to winning the award.

Rayce Foskett, MC Mortar Board chapter president and senior kinesiology major, proudly shared his thoughts on receiving the award.

“It’s a great honor to be a recipient of the Silver Torch award and be represented among a long list of prestigious universities,” Foskett said. “I am blessed to be associated with such great leaders that make up our chapter here at Mississippi College.”

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