Meet Cadet Elisha Weber—a National Guard soldier majoring in business management and Chinese.
Elisha, also a classical pianist, passed on a music scholarship to join the Corps of Cadets and study intensive languages at UNG. “I’ve always been a huge nerd when it comes to languages,” Elisha says. “When I saw how broad the language department was at UNG, I though that’s where I wanted to go.”
After studying a strategic military language in UNG’s intensive language institute his freshman year, Elisha won a national scholarship to take Chinese immersion courses for a year at Zhejiang Normal University in Jinhua, China. He’ll get an up-close understanding of how the second-largest economy in the world operates while continuing his required cadet military science courses online.
Elisha says his first semester adjusting to cadet life was a shock even though he had been stationed in Arizona with the National Guard for a year. He started UNG with FROG Week, six days of military training that transitions civilian students into cadets. He negotiated grenade assault and low-ropes confidence courses, rappelled down a 30-foot tower and 60-foot rock face, crossed a river on a one-rope bridge, went on a six-mile march, ran three miles up a mountain and trained where Army Rangers train. But Elisha says the toughest adjustment of all was changing his mindset.
“The shock of FROG week puts you in your place in the corps,” Elisha says. “You have to have the mindset of respecting people, and you only have a week to get into that mindset. It really helps you bond with the other freshmen. My class—25 or 30 of us—are really good friends because we went through FROG Week together.”
When he graduates, Elisha plans to commission into the military as an officer, ready and in high demand to address international affairs and global economic competition.