Air Force ROTC hosts Badger Challenge

See the Badger Challenge photo gallery here.

Air Force ROTC Detachment 925 cadets descended on Watertown during a chilly April morning to compete in the Badger Challenge. The competition site, which rotates among the four Detachment schools, moved to Watertown’s Brandt-Quirk Park and the Maranatha campus this year.

“We started planning this in February,” said cadet Sarah Gilbert, who worked with Maranatha cadet Kyle Nupson to organize the event. “It takes a lot of great teamwork. Thanks to Maranatha for letting us do it.”

Eighty cadets representing Edgewood College, UW-Madison, UW-Whitewater, and Maranatha were divided into four teams, or “flights,” before beginning the eight-hour challenge at 6 a.m. Cadets took on a rigorous physical endurance challenge (running, pushups, situps, etc.), as well as a land navigation test and an Air Force general knowledge test.

“One of the biggest things (about Badger Challenge) is camaraderie,” Major Barry Crook said. “Cadets are always encouraging each other.”

“It’s also team building,” added Lieutenant Colonel Todd Berge. “They’re thinking as a team to overcome the challenge. It really prepares them for field training in the summer.”

When all the points were tallied, Delta Flight was declared the winner with 357.75 points. Cadets from each flight were commended for their excellent performance.

“It’s almost like a capstone for the year,” Major Crook said. “It brings everything together. And, when you’re done, you have a huge sense of accomplishment.”

–By Deb Lew