MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCBD) – On Wednesday, SC Representative Joe Cunningham and House Majority Whip James Clyburn announced that one of the first Coast Guard Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (JROTC) programs in the nation will be established at Lucy Beckham High School in Mount Pleasant.
The program was made possible thanks to an amendment to the Fiscal year 2020 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that allows for the establishment of Coast Guard JROTC programs in high schools. The amendment was heavily backed by Cunningham. Coast Guard Admiral Karl L. Shultz sent a letter to Cunningham thanking him for his commitment to the Coast Guard.
Coast Guard JROTC programs are “designed to teach young people critical life skills like leadership, discipline, and integrity that help them become better, more engaged citizens,” according to Cunningham. He said that he is “thrilled that Mount Pleasant high schoolers will be among the first in the nation to have the opportunity to have this fulfilling experience.”
Whip Clyburn said that he hopes “more schools across the country will take advantage of JROTC programs and the new allowance that enables this leadership training to occur earlier in their educational pursuits.”
Principal Anna Dassing said that that the flagship program i s”a natural fit given our coastal location.” She continued, saying that the school looks forward to “offering our students the opportunity to learn about leadership, maritime safety, [and] service, and to get our young people started on a path to protecting our community.”