SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) – The City of Springfield celebrated the first US Junior Marine Corp Cadet ROTC program at Putnam Academy on Thursday.
The new cadets were honored by Mayor Domenic Sarno and the Springfield Superintendent of Schools inside the gymnasium of Putnam Academy.
The JROTC program helps students become better leaders while training them to be future marines. Members are also actively involved in the local community.
“It’s to build character,” Sgt. Matthew Fortune told 22News. “And it’s to teach discipline. It’s to teach leadership traits and it’s also to teach how to be a better citizen in the community.”
Putnam sophomore Marcus Espinoza said “It teaches us how to generally know what we are going to do, we can follow a routine or a set plan. We don’t have to just walk around and wonder what are we going to do and stuff like that.”
The JROTC program is open to all students.
There are currently 160 students at Putnam Academy participating in the program.