Elon junior Austin Hughes and sophomore Owen Gaffney successfully graduated from Fort Bragg’s U.S. Army Air Assault School in January 2016 during the university’s Winter Term.
Hughes and Gaffney both participate in the Army ROTC program and are members of the Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity.
The three-week course at Fort Bragg is one of the Army’s most rigorous specialized schools and prepares soldiers for insertion, evacuation and pathfinder missions using assault helicopters. Hughes distinguished himself by graduating first in the class.
The Army Reserve Officers’ Training Corps was founded when President Woodrow Wilson signed the National Defense Act of 1916. Since its inception, Army ROTC has provided leadership and military training at schools and universities across the country and has commissioned more than a half million officers. It is the largest commissioning source in the American military.