Warren Walker spent his years at Forsyth Central High School planning to enlist in the military right after graduation, ready to serve his country in a way he always dreamed of doing.
When he got to his senior year, however, he was offered a scholarship to the University of North Georgia’s Military College of Georgia, and he suddenly had to make a choice — immediately enlist or go forward with school.
“For me, it was an easy decision to make,” Walker said.
Walker pushed back his military service to pursue a degree in cybersecurity, and he believes he couldn’t have made a better decision. Now a senior at UNG, he serves as the Brigade Commander for all cadets at the school and will be commissioned in the spring as a Second Lieutenant in the U.S. Army.
Coming into the military college, Walker said he had not considered taking the officer route into the Army, but months of classes and rigorous drills made him realize he wanted to rise in the ranks and learn more leadership skills.
And he believes the Military College of Georgia was the perfect place for him to do it.
UNG is one of only six federally designated military colleges, and its Corps of Cadets has earned the Gen. Douglas MacArthur Award and honors several times as the top Army ROTC program in the nation, according to UNG’s website.
Walker said the school has more than prepared him for life after graduation.
“You learn a lot of skills you wouldn’t otherwise learn at any other college environment to prepare you for military life,” Walker said. “I think the officers that are commissioned out of North Georgia are so much further ahead than any other school or program.”
Learning more about how to lead other cadets, Walker decided in his sophomore year that he wanted to become an Army officer. In that same school year, he signed his contract, cementing his scholarship and agreement to start as a second lieutenant after graduation.
Since then, Walker has helped younger students, working to better the Army ROTC program and the military college itself.
On top of his responsibilities as brigade commander, Walker is also finishing up a degree in cybersecurity, a backup career he is happy to have planned out for when he finishes his military service.
Now, the UNG senior said he feels more than prepared to start his life in the military after graduation in the spring. Sometime next summer, he plans to start an Infantry Basic Officer Leader Course at Fort Benning before he is assigned his duty station.
“I’m excited,” Walker said. “I feel like the nervousness has passed now, and I’m just ready to graduate and get moving.”