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The arrival of the Class of 2004


          The first sign of the arrival of the Class of 2004 was the heavy rain and sporadic traffic through Lesesne
Freshmen cadets are measured for uniforms.
Gate which began at 7 a.m. on Saturday, August 19. By 12:30 the incoming class, some 650 students, had checked in, changed into their new PT (physical training) uniforms, eaten lunch, and said good bye to their families. At 1:30 academic orientation officially began for freshmen with a welcome followed by remarks by academic officers, the dean of undergraduate studies, and faculty members. For the next two days, fourth classmen would follow their academic officers into placement exams, computer orientation, walking tours and more. Monday morning brought an end to academic orientation and a beginning to military training.

          Reveille began just after 5 a.m. on Monday. After breakfast, students were led to McAlister Field House where they heard the Commandant of Cadets Brig. Gen. Emory Mace and Regimental Commander Craig Wilson speak. After remarks, academic officers gathered their freshmen and headed back to their respective barracks. All other cadre members were in position and expecting the Class of 2004.

          Members of the upper three classes who were responsible for training the Class of 2004 lined the quadrangle of the barracks. The tension was thick and the silence was loud as the freshmen entered the battalions. Then, all at once cadre members went to the freshmen and
began giving two and three commands at one timeinstruction overload. After getting the attention of the knobs, as freshmen cadets are called, squad leaders collected their students and the instruction began.

After leaving the cadet store, freshmen look in their bags for their Guidons.

          Cadre members spend weeks of training in preparation for the incoming class. Upper class cadets attend leadership workshops, conflict management sessions, diversity training, and more. Cadre will remain responsible for the training of the knobs until Parents Day Weekend (October 7-8). The fourth class system, however, does not end until May.

          For the next week, freshmen cadets learned a new way of life. Teamwork, discipline, and endurance helped them survive the relentless fourth class system and training period. By the end of day one, knobs were already taught to march, make 90 degree turns, salute, execute rifle maneuvers and much more. They took an oath by days end and began their journey on the "road less traveled," persevering through their knob year.

          All upper-class cadets returned to campus on Sunday, August 27. Classes began on Wednesday.

Profile of freshmen Class

Freshmen cadets in the third squad signal to other members of their squad.


          The Citadels largest freshmen class in ten years, which arrived on campus in August, represents 44 states and seven foreign countries. Among the freshmen class, the average high school grade point average was 3.04 and a little more than a quarter of the students were in the top 25% of their senior class. The average SAT score was 1067.

Other fourth class facts:

  • 246 instate students
  • 23 international students
  • 619 male cadets and 31 female cadets
  • Minorities make up 14% of class