The Air Force Junior ROTC program at Buchholz High School has earned the highest rating from the United States Air Force (USAF).
The Buchholz unit, under the direction of Colonel Jim Roberts (Retired, USAF) and Chief Master Sergeant Johnny M. Phelps (Retired, USAF) has been notified that it earned an overall assessment score of ‘Exceeds Standards” following a recent in-person evaluation conducted by the USAF. That’s the highest rating an AFJROTC unit can earn.
In a letter to Colonel Roberts, Colonel Stephen Sanders of the USAF said the evaluator was impressed with the dedication and professionalism of the students and instructors.
“Achieving a rating of ‘Exceeds Standards’ is no small feat—it takes a team effort and lots of hard work,” wrote Colonel Sanders. “Your program defines the term ‘successful unit’ and established the benchmark for others to follow.”
In particular, the USAF pointed to the ‘dynamic and supportive learning environment coupled with an excellent community outreach.”
In the last year, the unit has done a number of community service projects, including Adopt-A-Highway cleanups, canned food drives, a fundraiser for Service Dogs for Patriots, landscaping projects at the Ronald McDonald House, VA Hospital visits, numerous color guard presentations and others.
“All the activities conducted by our JROTC program are planned, organized and run by the students,” said Colonel Roberts. “These inspection results are recognition of the hard work the students have put in to operating an outstanding program.”
There are currently 133 students enrolled in the Buchholz JROTC program, which was established in 1982. The unit was last evaluated four years ago, when it also received an “Exceeds Standards” rating.