Rowan seniors commissioned as second lieutenants in the U.S. Army

Rowan seniors commissioned as second lieutenants in the U.S. Army


As most of Rowan University prepared for the holiday break Dec. 21, two graduating seniors prepared to serve their nation with a commissioning ceremony to become officers in the U.S. Army.

During a brief service in the Eynon Ballroom of the Chamberlain Student Center, civil engineering major Matthew Grosmick (at right) and computer informatics systems major Jack Minishak vowed to protect their nation and to uphold the Constitution of the United States as they were sworn in as second lieutenants in the Army.

Major General Steven Ferrari, Commanding General, 42nd Infantry Division of the New York Army National Guard, delivered the oath of office.

“Today ends your quest to become an Army officer,” Ferrari said, encouraging, yet cautioning, the Army’s newest officers to continually strive for improvement. “You will be given a certain level of respect because of your rank but that will not last long unless you earn respect.”

Grosmick, whose branch insignia were pinned on his uniform as part of the ceremony by his parents, Karen and Glen Grosmick, will enter active duty with his first stop in Fort Leonard, Mo., where he’ll take the Engineer Basic Officer Course.

Minishak (at left), whose branch insignia were pinned on his uniform by his parents, Cecilia and Frank Minishak, heads to Fort Benning, Ga., where he’ll begin the Infantry Basic Officer Leader Course.

Cadet Daniel Petito, a senior accounting major who graduates in May and who helped organize the commissioning ceremony for Grosmick and Minishak, explained that ROTC cadets at Rowan are part of the Princeton University Tiger Battallion and that enrollment in the program begins with registering in the basic military science course at Rowan.

“Most students take it with the intent of becoming an Army leader in the future,” Petito said. “I initially was unsure if I should enlist. I figured I could just take an MS class to see what the military lifestyle was like.”

But Petito, like Grosmick and Minishak, found that the leadership training and education afforded by contracting into ROTC spoke to him and he continued through four years in the program.

Capt. Robert Ianni, an assistant professor of Military Science and the ROTC advisor at Rowan, said commitment to serve opens up vast avenues of opportunity for men and women, whether they pursue a full career in the Armed Forces or not.

Presently, he said, there are 31 active ROTC cadets at the University and ceremonies are held for graduates twice a year, in December and May.

“From my vantage point, ROTC is more or less a management program,” Ianni said. “The skills students gain here directly apply to any major organization. Cadets learn to move equipment logistically and to build skills that would take years to develop anywhere else.”