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Three CCSD Seniors Earn Top JROTC Scholarship

Three CCSD Seniors Earn Top JROTC Scholarship

Three Cherokee County School District Class of 2024 seniors have earned prestigious U.S. military scholarships!

The seniors, Davis Clanton of Etowah HS, Savannah Mouritsen of Sequoyah HS and Sydney Watson of Cherokee HS, are among only 100 students worldwide to earn the Air Force JROTC J-100 Character-in-Leadership Scholarship. 

This elite four-year scholarship pays full college tuition and fees at any public or private institution with an Air Force ROTC program and provides a $10,000 annual university housing allowance.  Recipients are selected based on overall excellence as students and as JROTC, school and community leaders and their plans to pursue a service career with the U.S. Air Force or Space Force. 

“I offer my heartfelt congratulations to our scholarship recipients,” Air Force JROTC Deputy Director Col. (Ret.) Scott E. Lewis said.  “We are eager to help them succeed in obtaining the education and training they need to become an officer in the Department of the Air Force.” 

A four-year Etowah HS AFJROTC member, Davis plans to begin his college studies this summer at Virginia Military Institute as a JROTC J-100 scholar.  

He currently serves as his school AFJROTC unit’s deputy corps commander and oversees the training and functioning of all corps activities.  A four-year member of the unit’s Raider team, Davis helped win its 2022 national championship and 2023 national runner-up wins.  He also has served with the unit’s color guard, including as commander last year, and previously worked for Aero Atlanta at the Cobb County International Airport. 

Savannah has been accepted to both Virginia Military Institute and The Citadel and is deciding between one of those universities as a JROTC J-100 scholar or possibly attending the U.S. Air Force Academy.  

As deputy group commander for the Sequoyah HS AFJROTC, Savannah is responsible for cadet corps management and leadership and has played important roles in its community service activities.  A member of the Kitty Hawk Honor Society and graduate of Georgia Military College Cadet Leadership Course, for which she served as squadron commander, Savannah also is a four-year member of the school’s marching band and second chair clarinet.  Savannah additionally is vice president of the Beta Club and a member of the National Honor Society.  Savannah plans to pursue a career as a military lawyer.

Sydney, who serves as cadet colonel in the Cherokee HS AFJROTC, has received an appointment to the U.S. Air Force Academy and is deciding whether to pursue her studies there or elsewhere through the JROTC J-100 scholarship. 

She is a member of the school’s 2023 national championship-winning riflery team, as well as the AFROTC unit’s Leadership & Academic Bowl, Raiders, color guard, saber, marksmanship, awareness presentation and physical training teams.  Sydney earned the 2022-23 USAF Chief of Staff Flight Academy Scholarship through which she achieved private pilot certification; completed the 2022 Aviation Ground School program; and earned the 2023 Air & Space Forces Association Award and 2022 Military Order of World Wars Medal.  Currently ranked as salutatorian of her class, Sydney’s academic honors include academic letter, Lamp of Knowledge, Superintendent’s Key Scholar and University of Georgia Certificate of Merit.  She is a National Honor Society and National English Honor Society member and volunteers with the CHS Beat Out Cancer Club.

“Congratulations to Sydney, Savannah and Davis – we’re incredibly proud of you for this amazing accomplishment and your plans to serve our country,” Superintendent of Schools Dr. Brian V. Hightower said.  “You have earned this prestigious scholarship through dedication to academic success and years of investing your time and heart into your JROTC unit and school and community service.  Thank you and congratulations also to our outstanding JROTC instructors – to earn one of these scholarships is an achievement, but to earn three out of 100 worldwide is an incredible testament to our truly exemplary programs.”

The student’s AFJROTC instructors are: Cherokee HS, Senior Master Sgt. (Ret.) Jeffrey T. Bise and Technical Sgt. Jody Van Ostrand; Etowah HS, Lt. Col. (Ret.) Steven Bergey and Technical Sgt. (Ret.) Ciarra Malto; Sequoyah HS, Col. (Ret.) Dr. Detlef Klann and Chief Master Sgt. (Ret.) Dennis Dyke.