Dakota Strugarek, a cadet in Xavier’s Army Reserve Officer Training Corp program, has been selected for the U.S. Army’s Cultural Understanding and Language Proficiency Program. The program provides cadets with a 30-day experience in a different country to gain an understanding of different cultures in countries where they could be stationed as officers.
The program is sending Cadet Strugarek to Romania this summer. Cadet Strugarek is a native of Erie, Mich., and is currently a sophomore at Xavier majoring in psychology with a minor in philosophy.
The program is highly competitive and prepares cadets for cultural immersion through academic projects and missions, and leadership development. Immersion exposes them to other countries and their different lifestyles, economic standing and world perspective. Trips typically involve approximately 20 cadets and a cadre member traveling with a civilian agency or non-governmental agency. They last about one month, including deployment as well as a five-day soldier readiness process. Selection takes several factors into account, such as GPA, physical fitness and an essay.
Xavier first offered military instruction in 1877. Xavier ROTC has a number of distinguished alumni, including six generals. Since 1991, Xavier’s ROTC program has received the General MacArthur Unit Award eight times. This award identifies the top ROTC units among all across the United States and is based on an assessment of each program, including training, performance and cadet academic grade point average.