Three Claflin University graduating seniors will be commissioned with the rank of second lieutenant (O-1) on Thursday, May 9, at 2 p.m., at the Smith-Hammond-Middleton Memorial Center on the campus of South Carolina State University. They will also be recognized at Claflin’s historic Sesquicentennial Commencement on Saturday, May 11, at 11 a.m., in the Seventh-day Adventist Worship and Convention Center on Neeses Highway in Orangeburg.
The students have completed South Carolina State University’s Bulldog Battalion Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC) program and earned active duty commissions in the United States Army.
Since 1967, Claflin University has offered Air Force and Army ROTC programs through a cross enrollment agreement with South Carolina State University. The pilot program began with 13 students. Officially signed in 1972, the program was coordinated by the late Charles H. Johnson, dean of student affairs (1967-1986). By 1977, there were 107 students enrolled in the program, both males and females. To date, a total of 131 cadets (including this year’s candidates) have been commissioned with the rank of second lieutenant through the program.
Meet Claflin’s 2019 ROTC graduates:
Ashante Graham, a political science major from Savannah, Ga., will be commissioned in Active Duty and will serve in the Military Intelligence Branch. Upon graduation, she will report to Fort Huachuca in Sierra Vista, Arizona, for the Military Intelligence Basic Officer Leaders Course. After completing the program, Graham will be stationed at Fort Bliss in El Paso, Texas.
Over the years, Graham has developed a greater understanding of the purpose of the ROTC and similar programs. “Originally the plan was to just join for the benefits,” said Graham. “I’ve learned that the Army is much bigger than the benefits or me. It’s a selfless, service organization and I want to help and serve my country.”
While at Claflin, Graham was president and event director of A. Bevy, and a member of H.E.A.L, (Helping Everyone Avoid Loneliness), Friends of Earth, NAACP, and a charter member of Phi Alpha Delta Law Fraternity, International.
Teráe Moxey, a business administration major with a concentration in finance from North Wales, Pa., will be commissioned in Army Reserve Duty and will serve in the Finance Branch. She will report to Fort Jackson, S.C., for the Basic Officer Leadership Course after graduation. Moxey will be stationed at Fort Bragg, N.C. after she completes the leadership course.
Moxey finished academically in the top 10 percent in the nation in the Army Reserves to achieve the designation of Distinguished Military Graduate. The summa cum laude graduate (3.9 grade point average) is a member of the Alice Carson Tisdale Honors College, Spoken Arts (poetry and debate club), Financial Management Association, National Society of Leadership and Success, NABA, and Phi Beta Lambda Business Fraternity.
Growing up an “Army brat,” Moxey always knew that military service was her destiny. “I saw what the Army stood for firsthand everyday and I knew I wanted to be a part of this team,” she said. “After joining the ROTC in 2016, I realized that I wanted to take care of soldiers and lead the way. That is the foundation of the Bulldog Battalion.”
Glendale Vogt, a business management major, from Orangeburg, S.C., will be commissioned in Active Duty and will serve in the Transportation Corps. Upon graduation, he will report to Fort Lee, Va., for the Transportation Corp Basic Officer Leader Course. After completing the course, Vogt will be stationed at Fort Lewis, Wash.
“I wanted to participate in the ROTC program because it gave me an opportunity to step into an organization bigger than myself and learn how to lead individuals towards a common goal. The most important part was being able to mentor young black military leaders,” said Vogt. He is being assigned to the Inland Cargo Transportation Company.
While at Claflin, Vogt was a member of the NAACP, En Veux (modeling organization), intramural sports, and the University Wind Ensemble. He is also a member of the Lambda Sigma Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc.