Seton Hall University

ROTC hosts Pirate Week  

Image of ROTC members during Pirate Week 2023 in front of a tent. From the 24th through the 28h of April, Seton Hall University's Army ROTC conducted its inaugural ‘Pirate Week’ Celebration. This follows the time-honored tradition of storied U.S. Army units like the 82nd Airborne Divisions’‘All-American Week’ and the 101st Airborne Divisions’ ‘Week of the Eagles.’ The public outreach event demonstrated to our campus community some of the interesting things that the ROTC program has to offer and revitalized some of our important history in our 130th year since Seton Hall began training Army officers.

The entire Pirate Week program was spearheaded by Cadet Zach Houdart who was the cadet in charge of planning, coordinating, organizing and executing a half-dozen separate events throughout the week. On the morning of Tuesday April 25th, the cadets stood-up their camouflage tent operations center on the Green showcasing some of the gear that the U.S. Army has to offer. Cadet Edward Bae synchronized support from the New Jersey Army National Guard, New Jersey Transit Police, Port Authority Police, and Newark Police to bring some of their unique vehicles for a static display.

is NJ Army National Guard and Pirate Battalion posing in front of the Army M-ATV.

Pictured is Vaughn Calhoun, Assistant Vice President & Dean of the Center for Academic Success (center); NJ Army National Guard and Pirate Battalion posing in front of the Army M-ATV.

Many students stopped by to climb on the equipment and talk to the operators, some also marveled at how large these vehicles are and were happy to see the ROTC program integrating into their community.

On Wednesday, Pirate Battalion conducted its annual “Best Pirate Squad Competition” which tasked the cadets with eight teamwork focused exercises that tested their physical and mental abilities to determine which squad within the battalion reigned supreme. This challenge is based off the “Best Ranger challenge” which is a sixty-hour, two-person team competition held in Fort Moore, Georgia. This competition was held on the Seton Hall University green from 6am until 9am and drew some attention from the morning crowd.

Image of Cadre, Cadets, and Alumni

Pictured are Cadre, Cadets and Alumni.

Later that afternoon, The Pirate Battalion welcomed several alumni back to campus and headed to the ball field to watch Seton Hall University baseball.

The New Jersey Army National Guard supported “Fun on the Green” on Thursday, which was conducted by Cadet Ryan Harper. On the green they emplaced two inflatable pitching tents, a punch strength machine, and a buzz box free haircut service for all Seton Hall students and faculty. The cadets conducted a Chick-Fil-A sale and other fundraising activities including the ‘Pie-A-Pirate’ and Dunk-Tank challenge. Many students and friends of the cadets came by to support the program and contribute to the 2024 Vietnam Staff Ride Fund.

Pictured is Cadet Nicholas D’Armetta conducting the 15m Swim with Cadet Chrystal Corcodilos as lifeguard.

Cadet Nicholas D’Armetta conducting the 15m Swim with Cadet Chrystal Corcodilos as lifeguard.

The final two events of Pirate Week took place on Friday and the cadets were most excited for them. The Combat Water Survival Test which was led by Cadet Stephan T. Gibson challenged all the Pirates to take a dip in their combat uniform and boots along with their combat equipment. The sequence of events included a fifteen-meter swim with gear, an underwater equipment and rifle ditch, and a three-meter blindfolded drop into the deep end.

These events were to test the agility and resilience of the cadets in a new aquatic environment. Many cadets joked and reminded themselves why they chose the U.S. Army instead of the Navy as they realized the challenges of operating in the water.

Cadet jumping into pool 222x222Concurrent training was led by Cadets James Cummins, Thomas Kachler, and Justin Peralta all of which are the senior leaders of the Ranger Challenge team. Their training included how to use your pants as a lifejacket, waterproofing the rucksack, and using it as a floatation device.

The final event was the annual Military Ball which allowed the Battalion to reflect and celebrate their achievements in a formal dining setting wearing their dress uniforms. The event was held in the Chancellor Suite and it marks the beginning of the cadet leadership transition as select juniors are identified for specific roles and responsibilities in the chain of command they will assume when the seniors graduate.

Hon. Max Rose addressing crowd facing right 320x180

The honorable Max Rose addressing the crowd of cadets and guests.

The honorable Max Rose was the guest speaker of the evening and left some memorable words for the young cadets as he reminisced on his time as a cadet and early into his Army officer career.

The end state of Pirate Week was a great success due to the support from Seton Hall University, our Total Force Army partners, the local community, and most importantly our fellow Seton Hall University students. They enabled the Pirate Battalion to be all we can be and helped us develop a more personal bond with everyone on campus. We look forward to doing more elaborate events for the years to come. “Can Do, Never Quit!”

Categories: Campus Life