Bobcat Battalion cadets find a good fit in the College of BusinessNovember 4, 2013
Students gazing out of classrooms in Copeland Hall see what looks like an invasion. Uniformed troops rappel down the side of Bentley Hall wearing boots, camouflage, and helmets. An officer shouts instructions from the rooftop.
These are members of Ohio University’s Bobcat Battalion, the Army ROTC program at Ohio University. The Army ROTC was approved for Ohio University by the Department of the Army in September 1935.
Recently celebrating nearly 80 years at the University, a multitude of students have graduated and gone on to serve in the Army, active duty, Army Reserve, or National Guard, many of them through the College of Business. Graduates and staff members alike recognize the complementary skills required and instilled through the ROTC program and the coursework for the College of Business.
“ROTC and the College of Business are really complementary programs,” said Alex Chernushin, an ROTC and College of Business graduate from 2009 with a double major in Finance and Business Economics. “Both promote leadership skills and teamwork, while also fostering a spirit of competition.”
Chernushin chose OHIO for the campus, student life, and feeling of belonging he experienced during his visit. “OU was the only place I applied. It wasn’t just my first choice, it was my only choice.”
Chernushin was the George C. Marshall Award Winner and is now a captain in the Army, stationed in Fort Carson, Colorado. According to John Hansen, a retired Army officer now heading recruiting for the Bobcat Battalion, Capt. Chernushin is representative of the students in the Army ROTC program. Students who want to lead, apply what they learn in the classroom to real world situations, and excel academically and socially.
“[The ROTC] program is selective like the College of Business,” said Hansen. “We’re looking for positive people who identify problems and then solve them. These are the people who are planners and doers in the field and in the classroom.”
In addition to the discipline required, Capt. Chernushin cites other programs at the College of Business that prepared him for success in the Army. “The Global Consulting Program was awesome. The experience of working with people from other countries translated really well to the Army where I work with foreign allies and partners.”
Capt. Chernushin also cites the Business Cluster as important to his development as a leader. “During the Business Cluster you really learn important lessons in peer leadership – the most difficult aspect of leadership is when no one is in charge. The Cluster helped me understand when to take charge and when to follow.”
As the community stops to reflect on the sacrifice of service men and women this Veteran’s Day, Ohio University also celebrates their recent Military Friendly School® designation by G.I. Jobs magazine.
“The OHIO College of Business is providing an education for all students that will benefit them throughout their career, whether in the corporate world or in service to our country,” said College of Business Dean Hugh Sherman. “The skills we instill in students – leadership, critical thinking, analysis, communication, and problem solving – are skills that translate well to leading in the Armed Forces. We’re committed to continuing to offer an experience that is valuable to the cadets in the Bobcat Battalion and appreciate their service.”
According to the Army website, more than 20,000 cadets are currently enrolled in ROTC across the country. Capt. Chernushin has this advice for those considering either: “Both [ROTC and the College of Business] are great programs with a commitment to excellence. If you have the motivation, [each] gives you the opportunity to be successful.”