Two Army Reserve Officer Training Corps cadets at the University of Virginia were recently ranked in the Top 10 – out of 5,579 cadets – in this year’s U.S. Army Cadet Command national Order of Merit List.
Every September, the Order of Merit List ranks all Army ROTC seniors across the nation.
U.Va. ROTC Cadet Aimee Moores achieved a No. 4 ranking and Cadet Joseph W. Riley ranked 10th, earning both the “Distinguished Military Graduate” designation.
The national rankings are determined by a number of criteria, including grade-point average, strong athletic participation and demonstrated abilities during college ROTC training.
Another determining factor for a cadet’s national ranking is performance during the Leader Development and Assessment Course, held at Joint Base Lewis-McChord near Tacoma, Wash.
“The cadets’ Top 10 national rankings definitely reflects the University in a positive light,” said U.S. Army Maj. Mike Binetti, commanding officer of U.Va.'s Army ROTC detachment and a professor of military science.
Moores is from Gaithersburg, Md. and graduated from Quince Orchard High School. Both of her parents are doctors and colonels in the U.S. Army. A student in the College of Arts & Sciences majoring in mathematics with a pre-med concentration, Moores plans to attend medical school and, like her parents, pursue a career in the U.S. Army Medical Corps.
“Getting fourth on the National OML serves as welcome reassurance that all the work I did for the past three years truly paid off,” Moores said. “Ultimately, though, the ranking leaves all doors open in my career and reflects well on everyone who helped me get there.”
Binetti praised Moores’ accomplishments and acknowledged the positive impact her parents have had on her academic career.
“Cadet Moores is intelligent, passionate and committed to everything she does, and she will make a great Army doctor,” Binetti said.
Riley is from Etowah, Tenn., and graduated from McMinn Central High School. He is double-majoring in Mandarin Chinese and the politics honors program. “I chose these majors to help prepare me for a career as an Army officer, to foster peaceful relations with the U.S. and China,” Riley said.
“Cadet Riley is a tremendously gifted and talented young man who is involved in multiple programs, organizations and activities at the University, and excels at everything he does,” Binetti said.
Riley completed two summers of intensive Chinese language programs in Beijing, and interned at the National Ground Intelligence Center on the China Desk. Upon graduation, he will be pursuing a Ph.D. in international relations, focusing on Sino-American relations. He then hopes to serve as an infantry officer with a full career in the Army.
“I am honored and excited by my ranking in this year’s OML,” Riley said. “U.Va.’s success in this national assessment proves that this is one of the premier Army ROTC programs in the nation.”