Virginia Secretary of Education

05/18/2024 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 05/18/2024 11:59

Governor Glenn Youngkin Celebrates Virginia Military Signing Day

For Immediate Release:May 18, 2024
Contacts:Office of the Governor: Christian Martinez, [email protected]Office of the Governor: Christian Martinez, [email protected]

Governor Glenn Youngkin Celebrates Virginia Military Signing Day

Virginia students are sworn into the United States Armed Forces in Richmond, Virginia May 17, 2024. Official Photo by Christian Martinez, Office of Governor Glenn Youngkin.

RICHMOND, VA - Governor Glenn Youngkin yesterday, with the Virginia Department of Veterans Services and the Virginia Department of Education, honored Virginia students who have committed to enlisting in the United States military or entering Reserve Officers' Training Corps programs upon graduation from high school and dedicating their futures to serve in the United States Armed Forces.

"We are the greatest nation in the history of the world because of individuals who raise their hand and say, 'I will serve.' I was honored to celebrate and recognize the young men and women who are about to embark on a lifetime of service," said Governor Glenn Youngkin. "This takes courage, commitment, and love for your country. Thank you for your dedication to keeping our nation safe, and collectively, making us a nation with no rivals."

"Watching these young Virginians take the oath to defend the Constitution and protect our liberties as Americans was emotional and inspiring," said Secretary of Education Aimee Guidera. "In this poignant and joyful season of commencements, it is an honor to recognize our youth who are embarking on their military service to the nation."

"As a military spouse and parent, I deeply understand the commitment that the young men and women are making today, and I am incredibly honored to be a part of this event," said Superintendent Lisa Coons."Each young person's commitment is a selfless act and will ensure the safety of the entire nation. We are truly blessed to have such exemplary young adults in the Commonwealth."

More than 109 students from school divisions across the Commonwealth traveled to participate in the event. The Posting of Colors was performed by the J. R. Tucker High School Marine Corps JROTC, and the national anthem was performed by a soloist, Heidi Taylor, a middle school/upper school choral music teacher at The Steward School and members of the U.S. Marine Corps Band.

Rear Admiral Michael J. Steffen, Commander, Navy Reserve Forces Command, Deputy Commander, Navy Reserve Force, gave the event's keynote address. Remarks were also provided by the Virginia Department of Veterans Services Commissioner Chuck Zingler. Representatives from the United States Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, and Virginia National Guard were also in attendance.

Aiming to emulate the recognition granted to young athletes who sign letters of intent for their athletic achievement and selection, Military Signing Day is designed to support the United States Armed Forces and recognize students who commit to service in the military.

Since 2020, the Virginia Department of Education has celebrated Military Signing Day and has encouraged schools and their communities to set aside a time and place to allow similar events across the Commonwealth.

Governor Glenn Youngkin congratulates a Virginia student after being sworn into the United States Air Force in Richmond, Virginia May 17, 2024. Official Photo by Christian Martinez, Office of Governor Glenn Youngkin.

Governor Glenn Youngkin and Secretary of Education Aimee Guidera with Virginia students after being sworn into the Armed Forces in Richmond, Virginia May 17, 2024. Official Photo by Christian Martinez, Office of Governor Glenn Youngkin.

Governor Glenn Youngkin delivers remarks at Virginia Military Signing Day Ceremony in Richmond, Virginia May 17, 2024. Official Photo by Christian Martinez, Office of Governor Glenn Youngkin.

Governor Glenn Youngkin delivers remarks at Virginia Military Signing Day Ceremony in Richmond, Virginia May 17, 2024. Official Photo by Christian Martinez, Office of Governor Glenn Youngkin.

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