“Integrity first. Service before self. Excellence in all we do.” For cadets in the University of Missouri’s Air Force ROTC Detachment 440, the tenets of integrity, service and excellence — the core values of the Air Force — guide their purpose as students and soldiers.
The University of Missouri’s Air Force ROTC Detachment 440 has been training cadets in scholastic and military leadership since 1946. Students who complete the Air Force ROTC program graduate with not only a degree from the University of Missouri, but an Air Force commission as a Second Lieutenant. In addition to their four years spent as university undergraduates, Air Force ROTC students serve four years on active military duty post-graduation.
For Cadet Kelsey Elbel, an Air Force ROTC freshman from Holden, Missouri, a commitment to serving her campus, community and country drives her to pursue leadership in the Air Force. With ambitions of becoming an Air Force JAG attorney, Elbel challenges herself to reach new heights through ROTC. Reflecting on her pride and purpose as a military student, Elbel reveals the dedication and passion required of a Mizzou tiger striving to earn her stripes — and wings — as an Air Force ROTC cadet.
by Nora Faris