Welcome to the University of Texas at Austin NROTC Battalion website. I am the Battalion Commanding Officer, Midshipman 1st Class Thomas Shirley.
To all of our returning midshipmen, I would like to say, "Welcome back." Each of you has just completed your summer training with the Navy, and I cannot wait to hear the stories and adventures. No matter where you went or on which ship you embarked, I can bet that you learned more in that month than you did in the entire rest of the year.
To all of the new freshmen, "Welcome." Freshman Orientation will be the first battalion event of the fall semester. That will be the start of your prospective military career and definitely an experience you will not forget. Once you have completed Orientation, you will begin college and NROTC. Although it may seem overwhelming in the first few weeks, remember that the rest of the battalion has been in the same place as you. There is a wealth of resources available to help academically and outside of school. Talk to the upperclass midshipman if you have any questions throughout the semester.
Our main events this semester will be Freshman Orientation, Run to Dallas, Navy-Marine Corps Birthday Ball, and Alumni Weekend.
Run to Dallas is our annual event in which we run the game ball to the Cotton Bowl in Dallas for the Red River Shoot-out game against OU. Once we get there, we compete against the OU NROTC in a flag football game. This year we are ready to take back the trophy.
The Navy-Marine Corps Birthday Ball is our annual celebration of our services' birthdays-13OCT1775 and 10NOV1775, respectively. This ball is rich in traditions including a sword arch, cake cutting, and messages from the Chief of Naval Operations and Commandant of the Marine Corps. This year's ball will be held in the brand-new Student Activities Center, completed last year adjacent to the historic home of ROTC, Russell A. Steindam Hall.
Alumni Weekend brings back to campus members of the UT NROTC Alumni Foundation spanning almost the entire life of the unit. During their reunion they present scholarships from the Midshipman's Foundation to battalion members and share a BBQ lunch with the latest generation of midshipmen.
The successful execution of these events is only possible with the months of planning completed by battalion members prior to the semester beginning. The officers in charge of each event have worked through the summer and following semester to put forward the best event they can, and I hope you find each one to be a worthwhile experience.
I look forward to seeing all of you this fall. Hook ‘em!
MIDN 1/C Thomas Shirley