By: Cadet Sara Cosenza
When I tell someone that I willing chose to go to a military school for college I often get asked why. My answers always included the obvious: good education, meet new people, leave home, etc. However, I never knew until I got to NMMI what I was really signing up for. I found that this Institute is so much more than a school.
Here at NMMI the atmosphere is overwhelmingly positive. Every person you meet is striving for excellence and proud of what we do. Whether you’re an athlete looking for a scholarship to play for your dream school, a student prepping to attend one of the elite United States Service Academies, or simply a student looking for a completely unique educational path, everyone is helping push one another to achieve their goals. We hold each other accountable! In return, we are all gathering a vast skill set that will follow us throughout the rest of our educations and into our future careers.
The most prominent skill I believe I am learning here at NMMI is leadership. I was recently promoted, and while it has been quite the adjustment, I am learning to balance my hefty class schedule with the responsibilities that my new position brings. It is great experience to work alongside different types of leadership because it helps me decide how I do and do not want to be a leader. In addition to leadership, NMMI has given me the opportunity to grow in many other ways. For example, respect is a huge aspect of life at a military school as well as proper time management and learning how to work with people from all across the world.
The experiences that NMMI provides extends far outside of the classroom or corps duties as well. They still want us to be able to get away from our busy lifestyle and relax every now and then! Just recently, members of the ski club (including myself and some of my friends pictured above) took a trip to the beautiful mountains of Ruidoso, New Mexico for a day of skiing or snowboarding. In addition to the ski club, NMMI provides students with other extracurricular activities such as paintball club, boxing club, or hiking/photography club. Or, take part in the work-study program by lifeguarding at the pool. Cadets can even take classes to learn how to fly a plane or get their scuba diving certification! Participation in these clubs and activities has given me and my peers memories that will last forever.
In conclusion, NMMI surprised me with so much more than a good education. The Institute is shaping me, and the people around me, into well-rounded people with a handful of different life skills and experiences. I have never felt like I am missing out on the “college experience” that everyone talks about. By attending New Mexico Military Institute I know I will be able to accomplish anything from a challenging Calculus course, to commanding a troop of cadets, or even tackling that black diamond run on my snowboard. We are learning to work hard and then given the chance to play hard as well.