You’ve heard of the Runnin’ Rebels, sure. But do you know the Flying Rebels?
UNLV’s Air Force ROTC program – aptly named the Flying Rebels – is celebrating its 15th anniversary in 2019 and over the years has commissioned more than 100 of its graduates as officers in the U.S. Air Force.
The program has become an integral part of the university community, offering hundreds of college students valuable leadership and professional development training, volunteer opportunities, health and fitness regimens, and a unique career opportunity with the U.S military. You’ll also see its honor guard representing the Air Force and UNLV by presenting the colors at the start of dozens of academic and athletics events on campus each year.
“Air Force ROTC enriches the campus community by offering a program where students can learn excellent leadership and critical thinking skills,” said undergraduate math major Connor Smith, a cadet major in the ROTC. “Cadets are active in the community by engaging with area non-profits, and we work to set an example by not only excelling in cadet life but by excelling in our academics as well. We do our best to stand out among our peers and be someone that others can look up to.”
UNLV’s Air Force ROTC is open to full-time students at UNLV, CSN, and Nevada State College. To qualify, students need to meet certain academic and physical fitness requirements, and pass the Air Force Officer Qualifying Test. ROTC “cadets” also take an aerospace studies and leadership lab each semester, which is offered through UNLV’s Howard R. Hughes College of Engineering.
Cadets must also successfully complete field training, which is no problem for the Flying Rebels. The program boasts a perfect success rate in the intense summer program where cadets from all over the nation are tested on their leadership skills through academic and physical tasks.
“We came out of this summer’s training ranked third in the nation for field training performance, proving that our cadets are some of the best and brightest in the nation,” said Smith.
The program currently enrolls 94 students in a variety of academic majors. For those interested in a career in the Air Force, the ROTC gives students the flexibility to gain the required military training to become a commissioned officer in the Air Force while still living the life of a normal college student. Upon graduation, those who qualify and are selected will be commissioned as 2nd Lieutenants in the U.S. Air Force.
“Many students worry about finding good jobs that lead to good careers after graduation, but our cadets have a guaranteed job upon commissioning,” said Smith. “As a member of the U.S. Air Force, they’ll gain invaluable knowledge and make countless connections that could lead to a career in the military or in their field of choice upon retiring from the military.”
Learn more about about the UNLV’s Flying Rebels.