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ASU Cadet Tops in SW Region

April 23, 2012

Angelo State University student Abraham Morland, a cadet in ASU’s Air Force ROTC Det. 847, was recently honored with the William Randolph Lovelace Memorial Award as the top Aerospace Studies 300 (junior-level) cadet in the Southwest Region at a ceremony in Detroit.

The award is sponsored by the Air Force Association (AFA)  and was presented at the annual Arnold Air Society National Conclave on April 7.  Morland was chosen for the award from 3,237 cadets in the Southwest Region, which contains 11 states and 36 Air Force ROTC detachments. 

“It is a real honor,” Morland said, “but it still hasn’t sunk in for me yet.” 

Each Air Force ROTC detachment nominated its top cadet for the award.  A selection committee based its decision on academic achievement, athletics, military performance and other factors, such as Arnold Air Society membership. 

“This recognition demonstrates the great work this detachment is doing to train quality leaders for the Air Force,” said Lt. Col. Stephen Magnan, Det. 847 commander.  “I couldn’t be prouder of how the detachment has supported and trained him and all of the cadets during their time here.” 

As a recipient of the Lovelace Award, Morland will now compete against the winners from the other three regions for the AFA Cadet of the Year Award.  The Lovelace Award also comes with an opportunity to compete for the Olmstead Scholarship Program once on Air Force active duty, which provides an all-expense-paid year of study at a foreign university.  Morland will be notified by the end of the summer if he is the winner. 

A non-traditional college student, Morland was previously enlisted in the Air Force for three and a half years before enrolling at ASU.  He is scheduled to graduate in May of 2013 with a bachelor’s degree in cultural competency and security studies.  He has also simultaneously enrolled in courses that will go toward a master’s degree in security studies. 

Morland has received previous honors during his time with ROTC Det. 847.  In the summer of 2011, he earned the Top Gun Award as the highest performing cadet in his flight at a Field Training Course at Maxwell Air Force Base in Alabama and Camp Shelby Army Base in Mississippi. 

“On the third day of the 28-day Field Training, he cracked his rib and he was still No. 1 in his flight.  He is unstoppable,” said Maj. Valerie Reid, an assistant professor in the Aerospace Studies Department and one of the faculty members who nominated Morland for the Lovelace Award. 

“He is a picture of success for the cadre and the detachment,” Magnan said.  “He is good at pushing others and helping his fellow wingman, and is quick to share success.” 

Morland also received notification earlier this year that he has been selected for Air Force pilot training. 

“It’s been my childhood dream to be a pilot,” Morland said. 

Currently, Morland is the cadet wing vice commander for Det. 847.  He credits his success to the hard work and training from the faculty in the university’s ROTC program. 

“It’s opened a lot of doors for me here at ASU,” Morland said.  “I’ve been truly blessed.”