NJROTC (Navy Junior Reserve Officers Training Corps)
Oak Harbor high school started their NJROTC program in 1973 and continues to have a successful program. NJROTC is a citizenship and leadership program designed to encourage and help students to become informed and involved citizens of the United States. The Oak Harbor Wildcat Battalion currently serves in Northwest Washington near Naval Air Station Whidbey Island.At the beginning of the 2022-2023 school year, there are 236 active cadets.Senior Naval Science Instructor: Commander Vincent Quidachay, USN (ret.)Naval Science Instructor: AMHC (AW) William "Chief" Thiel USN (ret.)Essay written by Christine Magno (c/o 2022) for her application into Western Washington University:
How does it feel to be thrown into a position you’ve been dreaming of only to feel unprepared? I’ll tell you. It was like creeping up to the highest point of a roller coaster filled with excitement then suddenly dropping. I felt inexperienced, like I was handed an assignment and told “good luck!” without any instructions. I was scared to disappoint the people around me because I wasn’t good enough for the position. So I pushed myself to be better. Told myself to be more confident, be louder, be assertive. After all, “fake it ‘till you make it,” right?
Junior year in NJROTC is when we would learn leadership skills, how to march a platoon, and enhance our military knowledge. We were essentially being trained to become good seniors. However, I spent my junior year online even when given the option to do hybrid learning. Students would go to school for a few hours in the morning then go home and continue their online classes. Having to learn skills to become a good leader online put a damper on me because it wasn’t as engaging. I was unmotivated to learn because my mental health was at an all time low. It felt like I was below my peers, like I was being left behind.
My whole NJROTC career, I looked up to my seniors. They were like coworkers who have been working long before me that took me under their wing. My seniors were memorable, and I wanted to be like them. Towards the end of my third year, I was so excited to be a senior, be part of the Battalion Staff, and be in charge of my own platoon of underclassmen. When I was announced as a Company Commander, it felt like I was at the top of the roller coaster, right before the drop. I was assigned to juniors, they were known to be the most judgemental class to have in NJROTC. A few days into senior year and the roller coaster was speeding down. Fast. My excitement plunged as I was met with unexpected responsibilities and I realized that I was not ready to lead.
I wanted my juniors to remember me as the senior who helped them become great leaders. But first, I had to figure out how to become a leader myself. I wasn’t born confident, I had to decide to be confident. I took it upon myself to be assertive in what I know and ask for help in things I don’t. I learned how to march a platoon in person and channel my “big voice” which I’ve been told is unexpected from my small stature. I’m able to communicate with my underclassmen about what we learn in class. And I can finally say I have faith in my leadership skills and ability to guide my underclassmen towards their next year of NJROTC. I look forward to visiting them during their senior year when it’s their turn to lead.
As frightening as a big roller coaster drop was to be thrown into a leadership position, the skills I gained from it have shaped me into a more confident person. I am able to hold myself proudly instead of feeling left behind. I plan on using my skills to choose my words wisely in papers I’ll write, give presentations efficiently, and volunteer in the community. This roller coaster was full of thrilling ups and terrifying downs but I wouldn’t mind getting in line again.New and Incoming studentsCONGRATULATIONS!!Wildcat Battalion was selected as the #3 NJROTC unit in Area 13 which covers the largest geographical area, CO, UT, NV, Northern CA, OR, WA, AK, Hawaii, Guam, and Japan. WAY TO GO WILDCATS!!Oak Harbor High School NJROTC has won the Distinguished Unit with Academic Honors for the 17th Year in a row!!Community ServiceThe Navy League is hosting a Military Appreciation Picnic on Saturday, Sep 10. We have been asked to help set up starting at 0900. The picnic goes from 1200 to 1600. It will be located in the park between Toppins and NWMS. You can volunteer in the morning or in the afternoon. There is free food for those that come and volunteer.The VFW is doing their Adopt a Road cleanup also on Saturday, Sep 10 from 0900 to 1030. Just show up at the VFW on Goldie Road at 0845. Paperwork will need to be filled out so please come a little early.Physicals are only good for one year for NJROTC. If you need a new physical, use the following link for the paperwork from the athletic office.
Meets are held on two Saturdays per month. The Orienteering Team Carpools to each race, leaving at about 6:30 a.m. from the High School. Directions to the race sites are provided to drivers. Students can sign up to have their parents drive in the PDL in class. Parents have the option to drive their child and not carpool with others. Grade sheets are due on the Tuesday before the race to check eligibility and to have a specific count of participants. Races begin at the race sights at 10:00 am and start times begin as late as 11:30 am. Each runner will start at a different time to prevent participants from following each other. After the race, the students can stop for lunch on the way home.
Drill meets for 2022 - 2023 School year:
Mar 26 Marysville high school - Regional drill meet.
Keep checking here to ensure you have the latest details.Oak Harbor Wildcat Battalion has an award-winning Color Guard, Armed Drill Team, and Unarmed Drill Team. These teams are willing to attend events within the community, such as:
Changes of CommandRetirement CeremoniesMemorialsMilitary-Based EventsIf you would like to have one of the teams appear at an event, please contact Chief Thiel at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Drill Team Practice Times
Armed Drill Team Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday 6:00 a.m. Unarmed Drill Team Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday
Color Guard TBA
7:00 a. m.
Rifle Team Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday 6:00 a.m.
Awards2019-2020 #2 Best Unit in the Nation. Out of over 600 schools nationwide, OHHS NJROTC was #2. Way to Go Wildcat Battalion!!2019-2020 #1 NJROTC in Area 13. 50 schools in WA, OR, Northern CA, NV, CO, UT, AK, HI, Guam, and Japan.2006-2022 Distinguished Unit with Academic Honors (highest NJROTC award)2012, 2015, 2016, 2018, 2022 NWD&R Conference Champions - Placed in top 3 for 13 years in a row2013, 14, 17 & 19 Northwest Drill and Rifle Conference (NWD&R) Runner-up2017 7th in the Nation / 1st in the Navy JROTC - Elena Flake2016 Orienteering Team Second Place National Invitational2016 Rifle Team Conference Champions2015 Rifle Club Team National Champions