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History and Values

President's HallThe origins of today’s Pirate Battalion can be traced back to the closing decade of the 19th century. In 1893, at the request of Rev. William F. Marshall, President of the University and U.S. Senator James Smith, Lieutenant Michael J. Lenehan arrived at the Seton Hall University to begin instruction in Military Science. Not long after his arrival, on August 27, 1893, the Department of Military Science was formally established.

Under the command of a Professor of Military Science the first cadets were organized into a battalion of three companies. As was custom at the time, the cadets were trained in infantry tactics and given instruction in military customs and field craft. Cadets drilled three times per week and conducted a tactical encampment each June at South Mountain Reservation, then known as Camp Lenehan in honor of the battalion’s first professor.

Before the turn of the century Seton Hall had commissioned dozens of officers who went on to honorable service during the Spanish-American War. Shortly after that time, however, the battalion was suspended. For over 52 years the program laid dormant but never forgotten until, in June 1950, the Department of Military Science and Tactics returned to Seton Hall University. In September of that year, under the command of Lieutenant Colonel Mark Louis, the colors were once again unfurled and the roll reverberated throughout the campus.

Within a few years of the battalion’s return Seton Hall could boast one of the largest Army ROTC programs in the United States.  Approximately 600 students enrolled in the Cadet Corps its first year, of which 33 were commissioned as Second Lieutenants. The following year enrollment exceeded 800. In 1993 the Pirate Battalion celebrated 100 years of excellence and service to God and Country. In the intervening 120 years its graduates have honorably served their country in Vietnam, Iraq and Afghanistan, with one graduate, Captain Charlie Watters, being posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor for gallantry.

Today, from Korea to Kandahar, graduates of Pirate Battalion continue the tradition of leadership, duty and excellence began by Lieutenant Lenehan. For those both past and present the battalion motto “Can Do, Never Quit” and the University motto “Hazard Zet Forward” serve as a reminder to press on and do their duty, as did those who came before them and those who will come after. 

ROTC Patch

Army ROTC Patch

The shield symbolizes the Army mission of National Defense and is divided into quarters representing the four traditional Military Science courses that make up the Senior ROTC curriculum.  The Sword signifies courage, gallantry, and self-sacrifice intrinsic to the profession of arms.  The Lamp denotes the pursuit of knowledge, higher learning, and the partnership of Army ROTC with American colleges and universities. The Greek Helmet is symbolic of the ancient civilization concept of the Warrior Scholar.  The motto "Leadership Excellence" expresses the ultimate responsibility of Army ROTC in the discharge of its moral responsibility to the Nation.

Army Values

Loyalty: Bear true faith and allegiance to the U.S. Constitution, the Army, your unit and other soldiers.
Duty: Fulfill your obligations.
Respect: Treat people as they should be treated.
Selfless-Service: Put the welfare of the nation, the Army, and your subordinates before your own.
Honor: Live up to all the Army values.
Integrity: Do what’s right, legally and morally.
Personal Courage: Face fear, danger or adversity (physical or moral).

Soldier's Code


  1. I am an American soldier – a protector of the greatest nation on earth – sworn to uphold the Constitution of the United States.
  2. I will treat others with dignity and respect and expect others to do that same.
  3. I will honor my Country, the Army, my unit and my fellow soldiers by living the Army values.
  4. No matter what situation I am in, I will never do anything for pleasure, profit or personal safety which will disgrace my uniform, my unit, or my country.
  5. Lastly, I am proud of my country and its flag.  I want to look back and say I am proud to have served my Country as a soldier.

Cadet Creed


I am an Army Cadet.
Soon I will take an oath and become an Army Officer committed to defending the values which make this nation great.
Honor is my touchstone. 
I understand mission first and people always.
I am the past – the spirit of those warriors who have made the final sacrifice.
I am the present – the scholar and apprentice soldier enhancing my skills in the science of warfare and the art of leadership.
But above all, I am the future – the future warrior leader of the United States Army. 
May God give me the compassion and judgment to lead and the gallantry in battle to win.
I will do my duty.

Soldier’s Creed

I am an American Soldier.
I am a Warrior and a member of a team. I serve the people of the United States. and live the Army values.
I will always place the mission first.
I will never accept defeat.
I will never quit.
I will never leave a fallen comrade.
I am disciplined, physically and mentally tough, trained and proficient in my warrior tasks and drills.
I always maintain my arms, my equipment and myself.
I am an expert and I am a professional.
I stand ready to deploy, engage, and destroy the enemies of the United States of America in close combat.
I am a guardian of freedom and the American way of life..
I am an American Soldier.

Oath of Office

“I, _____, having been appointed an officer in the Army of the United States, as indicated above in the grade of _____ do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic, that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservations or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office upon which I am about to enter; So help me God."

Oath of Enlistment

“I, _____, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. So help me God.”

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