Stephen Hoeprich was recently awarded the SAME award. Stephen provided some information about this award and what it means to him. SAME stands for Society of American Military Engineers. The SAME ROTC Award of Merit is a bronze medal with bronze key replica. It was authorized in 1948 to be awarded annually to outstanding junior and senior engineering student in the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC). Students must be a junior or senior engineering student actively enrolled in an ABET accredited school and in ROTC. Five-year students must be in their fourth or fifth year. The criteria for this award is that the nominees/awardees must be in the top 25% of their engineering class and in the top 25% of their ROTC class. Hoeprich said that it is a great honor for him to win this award because he has worked very hard both with ROTC and toward his engineering degree. He goes on to say that balancing ROTC and doing well as an engineering student is no easy task and that he has had to give up several things hr otherwise would love to do in order to have enough time to get everything done. He says, “Nevertheless, it’s been a great trip and I’ve gotten a lot out of it. I feel very prepared to take on any challenge that is thrown at me in the next several years as a result of the pressure and challenges that I was faced with over these four years.
After graduation Hoeprich will be commissioned on May 14th as a Corps of Engineers Officer in the NY Army National Guard at the rank of Second Lieutenant. He will be a Platoon Leader at the 1156th Engineer Company (Vertical), 204th Engineer Battalion, NYARNG. As a National Guard Officer, unlike his Active Duty Counterparts, he will be able to simultaneously hold a civilian job and still be an Officer and a leader in the Army. He will train monthly with his unit and he will be deployable, but all other time will be spent at his civilian job. He says, “This is exactly what I wanted to do since I love both the Army and what I am studying.” He is still in the process of getting a job but he
hopes to get an entry-level engineering position at a large defense contractor.