From Classrooms to War Zones

Some students opt to join the military after high school


Artwork by Ethan Phipps ’16

Many students don’t imagine bullets flying around their heads or a drill sergeant yelling in their face just after they’ve finally graduated after four years of high school, but for some, this is a dream.

Traditionally, Jones is not known for any military motivation or training, but rather the high standard for which traditional and college-level classes are valued. Even after attending one of the top schools in the state, some students would rather enter the military after graduating rather than attend a university.

The motivation that drives this decision is strong amongst the students opting to join the armed services. Jian Liu ’15 said that it would be honor to serve his country.

“Everyone’s going to die at some point, so if I’m going to die in the line of duty then it’s worth it,” said Liu.

He plans to serve in the Navy and hopes to eventually work his way up to a sergeant. Liu however, is still applying for college even though his main focus is the military.

“I’m going to apply to college just to have options,” said Liu. “I’m continuing to do well in school just to make my parents happy and make them proud.”

Similarly, Serafin Herrera ‘16 said that he is also still going to apply for college even though he has plans to join the air force after high school. He, however, wants to be a police officer or a firefighter, and having military experience significantly increases the chance of landing a job in either of those fields.

“I’m still not sure, but if I’m going to be a firefighter I’m still going to go to school for all of the medical knowledge that I need,” said Herrera.

It seems that now many students are beginning to break the barriers of the traditional ways of education and are pursuing more unorthodox and adventurous careers, even if it means risking their lives to serve in the nation’s army.

Herrera added that serving in the military provides a worldly experience that most students could not attain at a university.

“I’m motivated to go into the military because I can travel the world and make money doing it. I don’t want to do something boring and end up having to stick with it for the rest of my life,” said Herrera.

On the other hand, Xavier Rosales ‘16 was inspired to join the military by his father and grandfather who served in the military. He aims to follow in his father’s footsteps and join the Marine Corps after high school.

“My dad served [in the Marine Corps] and I just feel like it’s the toughest branch of the military. I want to challenge myself and prove that I can be successful,” said Rosales.

He intends to carry on his father’s legacy and serve for 8 years, all the while enrolled in school as part of a dual program.