As part of a long-standing military tradition, 64 future officers in the United States Navy and Marine Corps marched at The Palestra during the annual Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps Pass-in-Review ceremony at the University of Pennsylvania.
Historically, Pass-in-Review was a way for a newly assigned commander to inspect his troops. Today, however, it marks the midshipmen’s “graduation” and the change-of-command with family and guests in attendance.
“This is a time to recognize all graduating seniors who will soon become Naval and Marine officers,” says Col. Andrew Wilcox, the commanding officer of Penn’s NROTC unit. “The spring review serves as the changing of the battalion leadership.”
During the ceremony, Midshipman First Class Constantine Filipos, a senior at Temple and the spring 2014 battalion commanding officer, handed over the helm to Midshipman Second Class Matthew Weber, the fall 2014 battalion commanding officer and a rising junior at Penn.
Wilcox says Weber is well suited to the task.
“Weber is an exceptional young man who is admired and respected by his peers and the NROTC staff,” Wilcox says. “His superb work ethic, proven leadership and superior intellect will move the Penn battalion in a positive direction. I have absolute confidence in him.”
Born in Seoul, South Korea, Weber grew up in Delmar and Slingerlands, N.Y. Adopted as an infant, Weber understands just how different his life might have been and says it is a primary motivation for his wanting to serve the nation.
“I recognized that my life is only as great as it is because of this country, so I felt that I should give back in some way,” Weber says. “I chose the Marine Corps because I wanted to lead the best. Even without knowing much about it back in high school, I knew the Marine Corps was where the best went.”
"I’m very excited to lead the battalion,” Weber says. “This will be a leadership challenge, but I am ready to take it on and see what I can do with it. The part I am most looking forward to is applying what I’ve learned in NROTC so far to the whole battalion. I want our unit to commission the best officers in the Navy and Marine Corps and I plan to do everything I can to support that mission.”
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