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Citadel News Service

For release
August 16, 2002

The Class of 2006 meets The Citadel

It's hard to believe that summer is nearly over. Soon the sounds of cadence will resonate across The Citadel campus, a sign that the cadets have returned and another academic year is under way on the banks of the Ashley River.

Knob training
Military training began in early August for freshmen athletes who are expected to become militarily proficient before they begin athletic practices.

On Saturday more than 600 freshmen are expected to report for academic orientation and military training. That's just a fraction of the record 2,057 young men and women who sought admission this year to the Class of 2006 at The Military College of South Carolina.

"The educational environment we provide continues to be in high demand," said John Powell, director of admissions. "At one point, we had a waiting list of more than 250 applicants for this class. Already we have more than 300 applications and 11,000 prospects for the Class of 2007."

The Class of 2006, which will make up about one-third of the total Corps of Cadets, is a diverse group, Citadel President Maj. Gen. John S. Grinalds told reporters at a press conference on Friday.

  • There are about 567 men and 50 women (8 percent) from 41 states and 15 foreign countries.

  • South Carolina residents total 269 students or 44 percent of the freshman class, while there are 345, or 56 percent, from out of state.

  • Minorities make up 16 percent of the freshman class, with 8 percent being African American.

  • Academically, the freshmen class has an average SAT score of 1074 and a high school GPA of 3.2.

"We're very pleased that The Citadel is fully enrolled and had a record application year," Grinalds said. "We are equally thrilled with the caliber of students arriving on campus. They are a diverse and academically outstanding group of young men and women who will be challenged physically, mentally and academically to reach their highest potential."

Leading the Corps of Cadets this year is equally diverse group of men and women. They are:

  • Regimental Commander Richard Neikirk of New Wilmington, Pa.
  • Regimental Executive Officer Ashley A. Garry of Clover, S.C.
  • First Battalion Commander Amanda Orson of Towaco, N.J.
  • Second Battalion Commander Justin Tobias of Virginia Beach, Va.
  • Third Battalion Commander Damasio Davila of San Antonio, Texas
  • Fourth Battalion Commander Adam Burch of Saratoga, N.Y.
Cadet Colonel
Richard Neikirk

Cadet officers have been on campus since early August and for the last week cadre has been preparing for the arrival of the knobs. Academic orientation takes place this weekend, followed by the start of military training on Monday, Aug. 19.

Athletic cadre has been on campus since July 29 working with more than 100 athletes who will take part in Bulldog sports this year. Among the freshman athletes are 49 football players, 14 women's soccer players, nine men's soccer players, six volleyball players, six men's cross country athletes, six managers, five women's cross country athletes, four trainers and two cheerleaders.

At 6 p.m. Monday, the freshmen will be sworn in as members of the South Carolina Corps of Cadets on Summerall Field. Upperclassmen return Aug. 25 and classes begin Aug. 28.