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Citadel News Service

Office of Public Affairs

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 28, 1998

FIRST CITADEL FEMALE CADET SIGNS CONTRACT WITH AIR FORCE

     Air Force ROTC Det 765, The Citadel, has announced Citadel Cadet Melanie De Santiago has joined the ranks of Air Force cadets pursuing a commission – a first in the 52-year history of the traditionally all-male detachment.

     De Santiago, of Denton, Texas, signed a contract with the Air Force Sept. 15, making her the first female from the Corps of Cadets to pursue a commission as an active-duty officer with a branch of the Armed Forces.

     De Santiago first became interested in entering the Air Force while attending Ryan High School. She spent four years in Air Force Junior ROTC where she learned about the Air Force Office of Special Investigations; she now hopes to enter that career field.

     She said she was always interested in attending a military school and chose The Citadel over Texas A&M because "everyone I know interested in military school went there and I wanted to do something different!"

     Majoring in German with a minor in Spanish, she hopes to one day pursue a masters degree in International Relations in hopes of serving abroad with the Air Force.

     "I wouldn’t trade my experiences at The Citadel for the world," said De Santiago. "I’ve really learned all kinds of leadership skills that I’ll be able to use in all parts of my life."

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