(Photo Credit: Thinkstock)

(Photo Credit: Thinkstock)

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A California Distinguished School, Whitney High School has earned its place as one of the jewels in the Rocklin Unified School District’s crown. Known for exemplary programs in athletics and cutting-edge, high tech-and-touch programs, Whitney also participates in a thriving Air Force Junior ROTC Aerospace Science program. The program is one geared toward providing students interested in aerospace science an opportunity to excel.


Creating A Purpose And Serving Our Country

Available to students both at Whitney and nearby Rocklin High School, the CA-954th Cadet Group is committed to helping students make a difference and achieve success within both military and civilian life. The Air Force Junior ROTC turns kids into cadets and teaches them about industrial, civilian and military careers in aerospace science.

Centered on the core values of the United States Air Force, the program’s credo is “Integrity First, Service Before Self and Excellence in All We Do.” The goal is to create commitment, leadership, strength of character for all cadets along with the pursuit of exemplary citizenship within school and the community-at-large.


Instilling Discipline, Purpose And Excellence

Cadets enrolled at Whitney and Rocklin participate in all facets of high school life. They attend classes five days a week and participate in extracurricular activities while taking part in a highly-intensive, study skills and time management curriculum.

Students in the Air Force Junior ROTC program are bound by both school conduct codes and Air Force appearance standards. There is a strong emphasis on attendance and academic excellence throughout all subjects required for graduation.

The program, which provides a comprehensive, four-year course of study in aerospace science includes classes in aviation history, environmental studies, space technology, rocketry, propulsion systems, and the scientific principles of navigation and flight.

It also affords some cadets selective nominations directly into the Air Force Academy and optional entry into the Air Force at two pay grades over typical enlistees. Cadets may also be eligible for four-year scholarships to senior Air Force ROTC programs.

The program’s instructors are highly qualified, retired Air Force personnel, approved by the Air Force to teach an aerospace science curriculum and lead the cadets in extracurricular activities related to course material. These include field trips to airports and industrial complexes as well as military and space installations. It also includes color guard, honor guard, rocketry club and several drill teams.


The Results Speak For Themselves

With a deep commitment to community, CA-954 logs close to 2,000 hours of community service annually. They have been recognized by the City of Rocklin and Rocklin Chamber of Commerce, and have received awards rarely given to high schools students, such as the Roy and Peggy Ruhkala Group Community Service Award.

Multiple Air Force Junior ROTC graduates have received scholarships and congressional nominations to distinguished institutions of higher learning including the Military Academy at West Point, Air Force Academy, Naval Academy and Merchant Marine Academy. One recent graduate even earned a presidential nomination to the Naval Academy.


Corey Whelan is a freelance writer in New York. Her work can be found at Examiner.com.