Rob Hughes, reporter for Oklahoma City ABC affiliate KOCO, graduated from the Army National Guard’s Officer Candidate School over the weekend.
KOCO reports, Hughes, who is now a second lieutenant, is one of 16 of 60 soldiers who started the program a year and a half ago.
“I’m going to try and go as long as I can in the military. I have a few idols in television broadcasting who’ve served 20-plus year careers in the reserves,” Hughes said. “There’s a long road ahead because this is just kind of like graduating, say, undergraduate in college.”
Though the lieutenants will soon be going their separate ways, the relationships made during the rigorous training leading up to graduation will go a long way.
“The benefits far outweigh the struggles simply because you learn how to be a part of a team,” said Maj. Gen. Myles Deering of the Oklahoma National Guard.
Three men were also inducted into the hall of fame just before the graduation ceremony began. Their words of wisdom to the new officers were to respect the people under them.
“They’re the backbone of the Army and they’re the ones that will guide you through when you need their assistance,” said Pat Scully, a retired colonel and hall of fame honoree.
Hughes and his fellow graduates will be in charge of as many as 40 to 60 people as early as next month.
“It’s something that I felt I would be able to do and balance two careers at once, which I’ve done,” Hughes said. “It’s been difficult and the key to success is having employers who really support what I do.”