Ajani Brooks is a leader at Baptist Hill Middle High School (BHMHS); in the classroom, and in the school’s JROTC (Junior Reserve Officer’s Training Corps) program. The United States Department of the Army noticed, too. For her academic excellence, military knowledge, and leadership, Brooks received the Legion of Valor Bronze Cross for Achievement this month.
Brooks, a senior at BHMHS, is the only JROTC cadet in Charleston County School District (CCSD) to receive this honor this year. She was presented the award during a ceremony at the school on February 1, 2018, promoted to the rank of Cadet Lieutenant Colonel, and designated the Battalion Commander of the Bobcat Battalion.
The Legion of Valor Bronze Cross is awarded annually to a senior JROTC Cadet by the Department of the Army for scholastic excellence in military and academic subjects, along with civic service. Cadet Brooks was nominated by Lt. Col. John McLeod, Senior Army Instructor with the school’s JRTOC program, and endorsed by Principal Vanessa Brown.
Brooks is one of 35 of 314,000 JRTOC cadets worldwide to receive this honor in 2018, and one of only two in South Carolina. “
Cadet Brooks earned the award due to her achievements in academics, military leadership, academic leadership, academic and military honors, discipline, courtesy, and character as exemplified by her volunteerism over the course of four years at BHMHS,” stated Lt. Col. McLeod.
“As a student within our high school of 245, Ajani’s name is highly recognizable amongst the faculty and students as someone dedicated and focused to do her absolute best in all aspects of her life,” explained Principal Brown. “Her past seven semesters have been nearly flawless with a 4.5 GPA. She is a model student and Cadet who frequently reaches out to faculty for greater challenges in order to improve herself.”
Brooks is also dually-enrolled at Trident Technical College; she will have 18 credit hours to apply to higher education when she graduates this spring. Brooks plans on attending college to earn a degree in environmental engineering, and hopes this honor will have an extremely positive impact on her future.
“Ajani is everything I expect a scholar and cadet leader to be: smart, articulate, mentally agile and tough, a critical thinker who is a humble, self-aware, and a selfless team player,” added Lt. Col. McLeod. “Most impressive is her character; she is morally and ethically straight, candid, and truthful. She possesses the intellect, skills, technical acumen, confidence, and strength of character to handle the rigors of college and life, and I’m proud that she is representing Baptist Hill with this award.”
For more about the award Brooks received, contact Lt. Col. McLeod at (843) 899- 2276.