Texas A&M’s Corps of Cadets is as old as the University itself. The land grant system of colleges that gave rise to Texas A&M mandated military training as well as academic education. The first 40 students who arrived for classes when Texas A&M opened in 1876 also became the first Corps of Cadets, and the Corps has been training leaders for service to the state and nation ever since. This training supplements the academic education of each and every cadet, preparing them to lead with confidence in their chosen fields.
A Uniformed Body of Students
While Texas A&M is no longer an all-male military college, its Corps of Cadets remains the largest uniformed body of students in the nation outside the U.S. service academies. Currently, some 2,000 young men and women are Corps members. Those students have realized the Corps of Cadets offers them something extra; an opportunity to live a disciplined lifestyle while gaining practical experience in leadership and organizational management. Their participation in Corps operations allows them to hone these skills daily.
Cadets in the Corps are at the heart of the Aggie Spirit. Because Texas A&M was a military college for most of its first 100 years, many of its most cherished traditions grew out of the Corps experience. The University’s Bonfire, yell practice, Aggie Muster and Silver Taps traditions all originated with the Corps. Thus cadets consider themselves ‘Keepers of the Spirit’ and ‘Guardians of Tradition.’
The Corps of Cadets teaches leadership within the framework of a military organization. The Corps has its own distinctive uniform, dedicated residence halls and dining facility, the Sam Houston Sanders Corps of Cadets Center-a museum-like meeting hall-and its own unique organizations. All cadets are assured of availability of on-campus housing, an added benefit of Corps membership. Students who join the Corps enjoy a ‘best of both worlds’ atmosphere, living in a military academy environment while attending classes with the rest of their fellow students at a contemporary major university.
Cadet commissioned and non-commissioned officers direct the daily Corps routine, under supervision of the Commandant of Cadets and his staff. The Corps lives together in cadet units, holds daily formations, marches to meals, conducts marching drills and physical training, and participates in other military-style activities.
A brief introduction to what a typical day in the life of a freshman in Corps of Cadets at Texas A&M. This video was made by the Battalion, on campus new paper. Featured here is Squadron 23, also known as the Nighthawks.