The Senior Porch and Honor Company

61 Ron Dranchek senior porchEvery morning and evening the Corps of Cadets assembled along the curved driveway in front of Old Main. Before they saluted, rendering Honors to the Colors, Cadets anxiously awaited the call to “The Porch”. Throughout the Brigade you heard “First platoon, second squad, fifth man.” Each Cadet in that position would then hastily proceed to the Porch of Old Main and stand inspection. A First Classman (Senior) would slowly inspect each Cadet in great detail. Shoes had to be perfectly spit-shined. Brass needed to be polished and worn correctly. The gig-line was to be exact. Trousers and shirt pressed. Fingernails clean, trimmed and you had to have a good haircut. In addition, there would always be questions, such as: “Who are the members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff?” or “Name the Presidents of PMC”. These inspections and other aspects of life in the Corps were part of a rigorous 30-week company competition to become the Honor Company.

The final portions of the competition were held each spring. the companies of the Corps participated in a drill competition plus a contest to determine the Outstanding Cadet Sergeant, Cadet Corporal and Cadet Private. The drill competition to be Honor Company was rigorous. Each company was graded based on inspection, manual of arms and facing movements and marching movements. The outside judges assigned points for each company’s performance. Prior to the company drill, the contest to determine individual honors took place. Independent judges would evaluate each Cadet candidate and awarded points based on inspection, military knowledge and performance.

The Honor Company of the Year Award was presented at the annual Mother’s Day Parade. The Company that had demonstrated superior performance during the competition was recognized as the best of the Corps of Cadets. For many Cadets it was a significant and memorable achievement.