The Citadel's top 100 cadets rose before sunrise every day this past week, threw on their physical training uniforms, laced up their sneakers and ran toward the stadium lights on Wilson Field.
After physical training they moved to the classroom, where they took personality tests, talked about leadership styles, brainstormed solutions to real campus problems and learned to function as a team.
Cadet leaders score the physical fitness test for the cadre, the next wave of leaders, who arrived on campus Thursday. The leaders then reviewed and critiqued each activity on the week's training agenda.
Cadet leaders learn to administer the physical fitness test for other cadets. It includes two minutes of push-ups, two minutes of sit-ups and a 2-mile run. Students on the Human Affairs Team, the group that will help cadets who are having difficulties, discuss typical problems students might have and how best to handle them.
Citadel cadet Clinton Handelson hasn't yet begun his junior-year classes, but he's thinking about how he'll motivate the other cadets in his battalion in late October, when people are tired and morale is low.
Long before sunrise, about 100 of the Citadel's top cadets put on their physical training uniforms and reflective belts, laced up their sneakers and marched briskly toward the stadium lights on Wilson Field. They cut short their summer vacations to begin a week-long leadership training. This is the group of upperclassmen who will help push freshmen, known as "knobs" for their extremely short haircuts that leave them nearly bald, through grueling military training.