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Chief of Infantry talks to cadets about leadership

Brig. Gen. Peter Jones, left, learns about UNG's Dahlonega Campus and the Corps of Cadets from Col. Brent Cummings, right, professor of military science at UNG.

On Jan. 21, Brig. Gen. Peter L. Jones, commandant of the U.S. Army Infantry School, visited the University of North Georgia (UNG) to speak to cadets about leadership and meet university officials and military staff.

Brig. Gen. Peter Jones, left, talks to cadets
During a presentation about leadership to second- and third-year cadets,
Brig. Gen. Peter Jones praised UNG's reputation for producing leaders:
"Whether you realize it or not, the brand of this school means something
– not just to this state, not just to this profession of the uniform, but it
means leadership to a lot of people."

Jones, who is Chief of Infantry and stationed at the Maneuver Center of Excellence at Fort Benning, was commissioned as an infantry officer in the U.S. Army upon graduation from the U.S. Military Academy in 1985. He has served in numerous staff and leadership positions in the U.S. and abroad, including executive officer to the Secretary of the Army at the Pentagon and leadership positions during tours in Iraq and Afghanistan.

After lunch with senior cadets who will commission as infantry officers in the U.S. Army and Georgia Army National Guard later this year, Jones also spoke with second- and third-year cadets. He shared the qualities of a successful leader and talked about the need for leaders in all fields.

"Our nation needs you to be leaders, not only in the schoolhouse, but in whatever profession you pick, whether it's wearing the uniform, or working in a Fortune 500 company, government, or within our communities," Jones said. "Leadership is a profession. In the Army, we call it our profession, but leadership is always a profession no matter where you're at."

Jones also had praise for UNG's legacy of producing outstanding military leaders, many of whom have mentored him throughout his career, and the university's dedication to instilling leadership in future heads of military, government, business and civic organizations.

"We're in the business of building leaders and the reason I'm here today is because that's what this institution does," Jones said. "Whether you realize it or not, the brand of this school means something – not just to this state, not just to this profession of the uniform, but it means leadership to a lot of people."

Jones also attended a briefing about UNG's new Institute for Leadership and Strategic Studies, a cross-disciplinary organizational structure to support coordination of academic, co-curricular, career placement, and leadership development programs related to UNG's Corps of Cadets.

Cadet Col. Nathan Cutler, commander of the Boar's Head Brigade, said it was an honor for cadets to meet Jones and hear him speak about leadership.

"It's an honor that the University of North Georgia has been recognized by the leader of the Army Infantry School," Cutler said. "I think hearing him talk about leadership was beneficial for all of the cadets who heard him speak and it was great to be able to tour him around campus and tell him about our traditions."

Jones assumed duties as the Infantry School Commandant and Chief of Infantry on Sept. 28. In addition to a Bachelor of Science degree from West Point, Jones holds advanced degrees from Georgetown University, U.S. Army Command and General Staff College, and National Defense University.

His awards include the Legion of Merit with two Oak Leaf Clusters, the Bronze Star Medal for Valor, the Bronze Star Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters, the Meritorious Service Medal with four Oak Leaf Clusters, the Joint Service Commendation Medal, the Army Commendation Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters, and the Army Achievement Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters.

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