UMass Amherst to Host Statewide ROTC Appreciation Day on April 7

AMHERST, Mass. - The University of Massachusetts is hosting a series of events celebrating "ROTC Appreciation Day" for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Wednesday April 7. The first event will be a wreath-laying ceremony at Memorial Hall at 3 p.m. with a fly-by of A-10 aircraft. That event will be followed by a leadership forum, co-sponsored by the Isenberg School of Management and the aerospace studies department from 4-6 p.m. in the Student Union Ballroom. Both events are open to the public.

Senate Minority Leader Brian P. Lees, R-East Longmeadow, representing Gov. Paul Cellucci, will speak at the wreath-laying ceremony along with Air Force Lt. Gen. John B. Hall, commander of U.S. Forces in Japan, a 1967 UMass alumnus and recipient of a 1999 Distinguished Alumni Award from the UMass Alumni Association. Cellucci praised ROTC programs across the state in a prepared statement. "As a former ROTC student, I am proud to recognize the achievements and contributions made every day by the young men and women in ROTC programs across the commonwealth," Cellucci said.

Other guests at the ceremony include: retired Lt. Gen. Richard M. Scofield, a 1961 UMass alumnus and recipient of a 1999 Distinguished Alumni Award from the UMass Alumni Association; Maj. Gen. Raymond A. Vezina, adjutant general of the Massachusetts National Guard; Brig. Gen. Edward R. Ellis, commander of the Air Force Officer Accession and Training Schools; Brig. Gen. James P. Czekanski, director of operations, Air Force Reserve Command, and a 1968 UMass alumnus; Brig. Gen. Richard S. Colt, deputy commanding general, 94th Regional Support Command at Ft. Devens; and Brig. Gen. Ted M. McFarland, vice commander, Electronic Systems Center, Hanscom Air Force Base. In addition, event organizers expect up to 250 ROTC cadets from across the state to attend.

The leadership forum, "Military Leadership in the 21st Century," includes a question and answer session and presentation by a panel that includes Lt. Gen. Hall, Lt. Gen. Scofield, Maj. Gen. Vezina and Brig. Gen. Ellis. The moderator will be Charles C. Manz, Nirenberg Professor of Leadership at the Isenberg School of Management.