After four years of getting up before dawn for physical training and excelling in the classroom, Huntersville native Brendon Mitchell will be commissioned as a second lieutenant in the U.S. Army following his graduation from Presbyterian College in May.
Mitchell, a 2015 Community School of Davidson graduate, began researching a potential military career as an eighth-grader. He has been on an ROTC scholarship at the Clinton, S.C., school for the last three years.
And his participation in the program’s Highlander Battalion has prepared him for being a military officer – far beyond all the pushups, sit-ups and running.
“The main thing is time management,” Mitchell said. “Whether it be PT in the mornings, training and balancing that with school work, it’s been very beneficial.”
From a leadership standpoint, he’s participating in several training programs. These included the Army ROTC Ranger Challenge held at Fort Pickett, Va. During his sophomore year, he was one of the 11 team members chosen from the three combined ROTC programs at Presbyterian College, Newberry College and Lander University. In 2017, he was chosen to train and lead the ROTC Battalion for that year’s Ranger Challenge competition, and in 2018 he participated in his final Ranger Challenge.
The ROTC program has built his confidence, too.
“We have a term in the military called ‘command presence,’ and it’s helped in the physical part of doing a bunch of things I never thought I could,” Mitchell said.
He is an active member of Alpha Sigma Phi fraternity, where he has served as social chair, secretary and sergeant at-arms. Academically, he has made multiple semester dean’s lists as a business major.
When he leaves Presbyterian, Mitchell will enter basic officer training school at Fort Lee, Va. Then he will manage equipment and personnel, overseeing “20-ish” people, he said.
“I’ll be in charge of making sure they’re accomplishing tasks in their career,” he said. “I’m excited and feel ready and prepared.”