Last year a Morgan High School graduate was appointed to the United States Military Academy (USMA) in West Point, New York, for the first time in 40 years. This spring, the MHS Class of 2016 includes another three students who have received appointments to these prestigious service academies.
Logan Cameron was awarded an appointment to the United States Naval Academy (USNA) in Annapolis, Maryland; Jacob Rice has been appointed to the United States Air Force Academy (USAFA) in Colorado Springs, Colorado; and Kennedy Wortman was appointed to West Point and will play on the Black Knights’ volleyball team.
Each of these students has prepared for years to secure this honor that translates into a scholarship of over $400,000 over the next four years of their education. Over the next three weeks The Morgan County News will feature each of these students and detail their individual journeys.
Logan Boyce Cameron
US Naval Academy
Logan, the son on Richard and DeeDee Cameron, will be joining the USNA Class of 2020 in Annapolis, Maryland, this summer. He has always thought about serving in the military, but a lesson during his sophomore year in Tara Ferrin’s chemistry class about nuclear power really spiked his interest in the Navy. Mrs. Ferrin brought in two sailors from the Navy to talk about nuclear power and it was during that class that Logan set his mind on the Navy and studying nuclear power.
Logan follows in his father’s footsteps in serving in the military. Richard served in the U.S. Army during the Grenada Conflict. He was stationed in Texas and preparing to deploy to Grenada when a pre-deployment trip to the Gulf of Mexico resulted in a jellyfish sting and hospitalization that kept him from being deployed.
Logan has approached his service in the Navy very aggressively. He enlisted in the Navy last summer under the delayed entry program. He applied for and was awarded a four-year, full-tuition and books Navy ROTC scholarship valued at $180,000 to the University of Washington.
Last summer he attended a USNA Summer Seminar in Annapolis at the Naval Academy, where he had the opportunity to live the life of a midshipman for a week. “It was a preview of the life of a midshipman at the Academy,” Logan shared. “It was during that week that I fell in love with the school and knew I needed to be there.
“The Navy is like a giant team or family. While at Summer Seminar, I felt that we were all going through hard things, but we could help each other with the challenges by using our strengths. I think it will be like this when I am a student there and we will all be doing hard things together, but will be helping each other,” Logan commented.
To be appointed to any service academy, a student must apply, complete a rigorous physical examination and also obtain a nomination from a congressman or senator from the state in which he or she resides. Congressman Rob Bishop nominated Logan.
On Feb. 2, 2016, Logan woke up to an email from the Naval Academy announcing his acceptance. Having already been awarded the NROTC scholarship, Logan had to choose between the two offers.
“I feel that the academy is better for me. It will push me out of my comfort zone. It is more prestigious in the Navy and my goal is to be a naval officer. In talking with retired Navy officers, I found that those who graduate from the Academy are more highly respected in the fleet,” Logan noted of his choice to accept his appointment over the NROTC scholarship.
On June 30, Induction Day, or “I-Day” as the midshipmen refer to it, Logan will begin his Plebe Summer with six weeks of basic training. He shared, “I am super excited and anxious to start this new chapter in my life. I love the honor and order of the Naval Academy. I hope to enjoy basic training. I am more scared about the mental breakdown than the physical challenges.”
Logan will attend the academy for four years with “summer cruises” each summer. Midshipmen are sent to different ships, submarines and locations to learn the “enlisted side” of the Navy each summer and gain experience in the field. Logan’s main goal is to become a naval officer and he would like to specialize in mechanical or nuclear engineering to become an aviation officer or submarine officer. Eventually he would like to get a Master’s degree in engineering.
While at the USNA, all students are required to participate in a sport. Logan is interesting in trying out for the sprint football team, the boxing club and the weightlifting club.
Throughout high school, Logan has excelled in sports and academics. He is a 4.0 student, Sterling Scholar, president of the National Honor Society and was co-captain of the Trojan football team that finished second in the state in 2015.
Some of his most memorable high school experiences include playing for the state championship in football and being a team captain, being named to Academic All-State in football, participating in the Amazing Race for football camp, and watching the volleyball team win their state championship.
“I love being in the student section rallying the students in the crowd and feeling a part of the group. We have a super tight senior class and they are really amazing,” Logan concluded.
As he wraps up his high school experience, Logan noted that four special teachers have challenged him and pushed him to see his full potential. “Thanks to all of them for making me see that I can accomplish more,” he remarked. “Mrs. Romero and Mr. Floyd prepared me for college-level study. Mrs. Ferrin always pushed us hard and brought the Navy into my life and Mr. Gudmundson taught me so many life lessons about what is really, truly important,” Logan continued.
Mr. Gudmundson “played a major decision in helping me make the choice to go to the Navy. He told me, ‘You just need to do the thing in life that you will enjoy the most that will most greatly impact society.’ Before, I had always thought about money, not making a difference. Mr. Gudmundson helped me see things differently and is a great example of this idea. ”
Gwen Romero, AP English teacher, remarked regarding Logan. “He has been a delight to work with. I have high respect for his motivation to excel.”
Logan shared the following advice for students who may be interested in applying for the USNA or other service academies. “Get involved in school and excel in service and leadership. They are looking for student athletes who are physically fit and smart. Speak with retired officers from your branch of the service and learn about their experiences. Explore all of your avenues. Talk with recruiting officers. Petty Officer Richard Bryant, my recruiting officer when I enlisted last summer, has been so helpful in this procedure.
“I am so grateful to Morgan High for helping prepare me for this next step in my life. My teachers, coaches, parents, grandparents and sister have all been a great support for me and I couldn’t have done this without them!”