The 2019 Military Historical Society of Massachusetts ROTC Essay Contest

Each year the Military Historical Society of Massachusetts (MHSM) hosts a leadership essay contest to recognize the top essay written by a Massachusetts ROTC Cadet. The winning essay is awarded a total sum of $4,000; $2,500 in the form of a scholarship check to the Cadet author and a $1,500 check for program funds to support the study of military history to the winning Cadet’s ROTC Program.

2019 marks the 200th Anniversary of the creation of ROTC. The ROTC story begins in 1819 with Capt. Alden Partridge, a former superintendent of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, New York. Capitalizing on his experience, Partridge established the American Literary, Scientific and Military Academy in Norwich, Vt. It was there that Partridge's method of producing "citizen-soldiers" first took root. There have been significant changes to the programs through the last two centuries. In honor of the 200th anniversary of ROTC, the 2019 essay question asked: How have military historical events shaped the curriculum of ROTC over time, and what do you feel was the most significant change?

2019 Competition Winner: Cadet Easun Arunachalam, MIT Army ROTC

Cadet Arunachalam is presented a certificate by Vice President and ROTC Essay Chair Wayne Ludwig for his winning entry. Also pictured are Military History Instructor Sean McDonough (left) and Senior Military Instructor MSG David Barrera (right).

Pictured from left to right: Professor of Military Science MAJ David Stalker, Cadet Arunachalam, Senior Military Instructor MSG David Barrera, and Military History Instructor Sean McDonough.

Essay Contest Winners

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2018 Winner - Cadet Lucy Lee Essay: Cryptography in the First World War

2017 Winner - Cadet Eva Lisowski Essay: An Ordinary Hero

2016 Winner - Cadet Eric Koch Essay: American Spirit: The Yankee Division in the First World War

2015 Winner - Cadet Jocelyn Bly Essay: Mission Command: A Timeless Weapon

2014 Winner - Cadet James Kiefner Essay: Portrait of General Ulysses S. Grant (Un-titled essay)

2013 Winner - Cadet Daniel Silva Essay: From Revolution to Rapprochement | The War of 1812: The Causes, the War, the Legacy

2010 Winner - Cadet Garrett Brnger Essay: A War Fought from Both Sides: The ignored lessons of the American Revolution and their application to Vietnam

2009 Winner - Cadet William Mathews Essay: The Foreseeable Victory: A Justification for the Federal Use of Force in the Civil War

2008 Winner - Cadet Spencer Reese Essay: Washington’s Principle: Civil-Military Relations 1776-2008