Two UTSA Students Honored to Join U.S. Army


Ben Shirani

Cody Warren and David Ripley will be honored during a semi-annual ceremony on Jan 11 celebrating their successful completion of the UTSA Army Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC).

For the two graduating seniors, the completion of the four-year Army ROTC program marks the beginning of their careers as officers in the United States (U.S.) Army.

Professor of Military Science, Lieutenant Colonel (LTC) Kristin Shifrin will preside over the ceremony where the two students will swear an oath of office, have two gold bars pinned onto their uniforms, which symbolizes their rank of Second Lieutenant (2LT), and be honored with a “Silver Dollar Salute.”

According to LTC Shifrin, the Silver Dollar Salute “dates back to the 19th century and symbolizes the trust and confidence the officer has in the Non Commissioned Officer (NCO) Corps as a whole.”

During this portion of the ceremony, the new officers will receive their first salute from the NCO.

“UTSA’s Army ROTC program is unique in that we consistently produce quality officers and is the host University for four neighboring colleges (San Antonio College, Northwest Vista, Wayland Baptist University, and Texas A&M University as San Antonio),” said senior multidisciplinary studies major and Army ROTC Cadet First Sergeant (CDT1SG) Jade Pascual.

Graduating senior and commissioning Second Lieutenant David Ripley explained that after training for four years with the UTSA Army ROTC Roadrunner Battalion, cadets are obligated to at least four years of federal service with the U.S. Army and that many students are eligible for scholarships through the ROTC program.

According to Ripley, each year ROTC cadets are required to take an ROTC class, an accompanying lab and attend physical training three days per week.

“So it’s almost like learning a different culture,” Ripley said.

“Commissioning means you will be transitioning from that cadet life into the actual Army. You will sign an officers contract that says ‘I am an army officer. This is my life and it is my job.’ For me, it means all those nights of hard work, staying up late and waking up early, doing all those details and doing all that volunteering is finally coming to that end goal of becoming an army officer. Four years of dedicated and motivated work finally coming together and it’s amazing,” said Ripley.