Palo Alto High School senior Cedric Amaya will have his college education paid for before joining the Marine Corps after college. Amaya received a Navy Reserve Officers Training Program scholarship, and is one of the few students at Paly who is choosing a military path after high school.
“I believe that Paly students aren’t as aware of the number of possibilities the military has to offer,” Amaya said. “Kids often think that if you join the military, the only option you have is to be on the front lines fighting. That’s obviously not the case and unfortunately the students here at Paly do not know that.”
The NROTC is a program that runs concurrently with a student’s college’s or university’s educational course of study. Besides working towards a number of different bachelor’s degrees, the students attend classes in Naval Science and train physically, according to the NROTC website.
“I chose to join the Marine Corps for a couple reasons,” Amaya said. “I wanted to have my education paid for and not have to worry about being in debt afterwards. I also want to be a pilot when I am older and I figured the military would be a good place for me to get my training.
Selected applicants for the NROTC Scholarship Program are awarded scholarships through a highly competitive national selection process, and receive full tuition, books stipend, educational fees and other financial benefits at many of the country’s leading colleges and universities, according to the scholarship program’s website.
“I’m very excited to have been rewarded the NROTC scholarship,” Amaya said. “I’m happy to be going to college and not having to worry about paying back huge amounts of debts years later.”