The students in Bedichek Middle School’s Junior Marine Corps are walking a little taller these days after earning the spirit award at the 2013 National Middle School Drill Team Championships in Forth Worth recently.
Approximately 30 schools competed in the championship competition last month, hoping to earn top recognitions for their drill team and color guard presentations, but the spirit award is one of the most coveted honors at the competition.
Unlike other accolades, the winner of the spirit award is not measured or evaluated using any single criteria; rather, the winner holds a compilation of attributes that make them stand out during the competition. It is presented to the school that demonstrates sterling conduct both in and out of competition and who demonstrate honor throughout the event.
In addition to earning the spirit award, the students also earned third and fourth place over-all in the unarmed color guard and unarmed drill team categories, respectively.
While students in the Bedichek Junior Marines are not required to seek any particular commitment to the military, the purpose of the program, according to its leader Darrick Norton, is to instill the values of consideration, integrity, service, personal responsibility and accomplishment among its members.
The program is offered to students in sixth through eighth grade and required members to undergo leadership training, physical training, drill ceremonies and engage in teamwork.
To learn more about the Bedichek Junior Marine Corps, visit www.juniormarines.org.