Category Archives: High School

Commencement 2016

3_nguyenderekTHURSDAY, MAY 26:

Commencement Weekend kicked off on Thursday, May 26 with the 84th annual Wallace Fry Public Speaking Contest, which is held in honor of W. Wallace Fry, Jr. of the MMA class of 1903.

Three middle school students and four high school students vied for the top prize. The contest began with seventh grade speaker Tamar Modise whose speech was entitled, Do You Care? Homelessness in the USA. Modise was followed by eighth grader Derek Nguyen, whose speech was entitled, Society’s Codependence with the Environment.

“New technology has changed the interaction of people with the environment,” said Nguyen, who urged audience members to consider the impact that pollution and industry have on the planet. “We discovered atoms. … But at the same time, those atoms were used for nuclear warfare.”

The final middle school speaker was eighth grader Nehemiah Simmons, whose speech was entitled, The Irrelevance of the Constitution. Simmons argued that too few American citizens are aware of the inner workings of the U.S. government and the freedoms guaranteed by the Bill of Rights.

6_simmons“With the prudent use of our individual votes, we … can ensure that we are a government of the people, by the people and for the people,” Simmons concluded.

The first high school speaker was sophomore Francisco Fletes whose speech was entitled, Depression: The Silent Murderer. He began his address with a hypothetical scenario, asking the audience to imagine themselves in a large crowd of people.

“Not one of them seems to notice you. You are waving your arms. You are screaming out. You are begging to be noticed. No one even bats an eye,” Fletes said. “This is how many adolescents suffering from depression really feel.”

The sophomore spoke of the teen suicide rate, which has decreased since 1986 but has recently begun to spike, and urged his fellow students to reach out to friends who seem distant or troubled.

15_fletesUp next was senior Kyle Mertens, whose speech was entitled, Rewards as a Detriment to Competition. Mertens, who argued that awards such as Employee of the Month are detrimental to worker performance and morale, competed in the speech contest for the second consecutive year.

“When one is comparing themselves to others, it’s very difficult for them to move forward,” he said. “Not everyone can win.”

Juniors Hector Villanueva (The True Cost of Contact Sports) and Michael Wetzel (The Ultimate Honor) spoke next, followed by a short intermission allowing the trio of judges to deliberate. Returning judge Lou Leonatti, J.D. of Leonatti & Baker PC was joined by Dr. Kurt Jefferson of Westminster College and Patrick Morgan, J.D. of the Missouri State Treasurer’s Office.

Simmons received The Joy McGeorge Middle School Oratory Award, which is presented to the middle school cadet whose speech is judged to be the best on the basis of charismatic and knowledgeable oratory skill.

Fletes received The W. Wallace Fry Cup for Excellence in Speaking, which is presented to the cadet whose speech is judged to be the best on the basis of delivery, content and depth of thought.

bruce -- by FosterFRIDAY, MAY 27: MS FINAL ASSEMBLY

Commencement continued on Friday, May 27 with the Company Competitive Drill. Each company completed a prescribed set of maneuvers on the drill field and were judged by JROTC and Commandant’s Office staffers. Echo Company was declared the winner for the second consecutive year.

Following the Competitive Drill, sixth to eighth grade cadets and their families gathered in the Memorial Chapel for the Middle School Final Assembly. After a short greeting by Associate Dean for the Middle School Edsel Baker, Commandant of Cadets LTC Greg Seibert took the stage to present barracks and military awards.

Best Squad Leader Award: Nehemiah Simmons

Piper Barracks Award, given to the cadet receiving the fewest checks during the school year: Michael Naughton

G. David Bailey Discipline Trophy, for the cadet with the fewest disciplinary reports for the entire year: Kevyn Bruce

AT2 Jorge Soriano ’89 next presented the Major George T. Piper Award for Outstanding Middle School Athlete to Jordan Hornick.

Up next was LTC Willis Kleinsorge, who presented Spring Family Weekend Science Fair awards, followed by the presentation of academic honors.

Academic Fourragere, Marking Period V: Dongyang Chen, Jordan Hornick, Scout Jones, Michael Naughton. Academic Fourragere, Marking Period IV: Enrique Acevedo, Dongyang Chen, Nicholas Gonzalez, Jordan Hornick, Scout Jones, Michael Naughton, Santiago Sanchez, Nehemiah Simmons. Academic Fourragere, Marking Period VI: Enrique Acevedo, Dongyang Chen, Nicolas Gonzalez, Jordan Hornick, Thomas Huckins, Scout Jones, Michael Naughton, Derek Nguyen, Santiago Sanchez, Nehemiah Simmons. (To earn Academic Fourragere, cadets must earn a 3.7 grade point average for the marking period.)

Delta Phi Honor Sociey, middle school members: Dongyang Chen, Jordan Hornick, Scout Jones, Michael Naughton, Santiago Sanchez, Nehemiah Simmons.

acevedo_simmons_gonzalezn_naughton_hornick -- by FosterScholarship Medal, given for an average GPA of 3.7 or higher during fall 2015: Dongyang Chen, Jordan Hornick, Scout Jones, Michael Naughton, Nehemiah Simmons.

Scholarship Medal, given for an average GPA of 3.7 or higher during spring 2016: Dongyang Chen, Jordan Hornick, Scout Jones, Michael Naughton.

AT2 Jorge Soriano ’89 and Baker next took the stage to present the final batch of middle school honors and conduct the eighth grade promotion ceremony. Diplomas were awarded to 23 students.

Derrill S. Kuhlman Award, for extraordinary achievement in math and science; and Highest Scholarship in the Sixth Grade: Scout Jones

Highest Scholarship in the Seventh Grade: Santiago Sanchez
Highest Scholarship in the Eighth Grade: Dongyang Chen & Michael Naughton
Richard White Improvement Plaque: Dongyang Chen
Judy A. Twells Middle School Drama Award: Alain Mestre

Faculty Plaque, awarded to an eight grade cadet who has shown the most leadership, cooperation and loyalty; and the Rotary Club Service Above Self Award, given to the cadet who, in the opinion of the faculty and staff, has been the most reliable helper during the school year: Michael Naughton

Paul Petit Award for International Relations, given to eighth grader(s) who have helped improve international relations in the middle school: Enrique Acevedo & Derek Nguyen

rodriguezc -- by FosterHal Heyman Memorial Award, for the eighth grader who, in the opinion of the faculty, possesses those characteristics that distinguish an All American Boy; and the Col. Jerome G. Harris Plaque, awarded to the most soldierly middle school cadet: Nehemiah Simmons

Petit Fellowship Cup, awarded to a cadet exhibiting the best fellowship for the year: Kevyn Bruce

Rotary “Leaders of Tomorrow” Award and $100 stipend:
Michael Naughton & Nehemiah Simmons

LT Governor Joe Maxwell Community Service Award, given to the middle schooler who contributed the highest number of community service hours: Oscar Lopez Benavides, 182.5 hours

President’s Award for Educational Excellence: Dongyang Chen, Michael Naughton & Nehemiah Simmons. (Given to eighth grade students who: earn a GPA of 3.5 or more for two or more consecutive years; and score in the 85th percentile in reading or math.)

President’s Award for Educational Achievement: Jordan Hornick


As middle school students and their families gathered in the Memorial Chapel, freshman through senior students and their families attended the High School Final Assembly. Accompanied by the MMA Band, the Corps of Cadets marched into the Centennial Gymtorium and recited the National Anthem before taking their seats

Academy President Charles McGeorge welcomed the crowd and spoke briefly about his favorite poem — Invictus — which a high school teacher shared with him during a tough time in his life.

The first batch of awards were presented by Academic Dean Dr. Frank Giuseffi.

fitzgerald_conyers_duing_lomasfreddie -- byECDavid Whitney ’54 Conservation Plaque, given for interest in and appreciation of conservation: Joseph Mulvey

Senator John C. Danforth Plaque for outstanding knowledge and appreciation of constitutional government: Maverick Jones

William F. Enright, Jr. ’37 Memorial Award for proficiency in business and computer studies: John Curley

Major William Bryan Essay Medal for excellence in writing: Alexander Seibert
Senator Thomas F. Eagleton Plaque for Excellence in Senior English: Connor Cunningham
Senator Thomas F. Eagleton Plaque for Excellence in Junior English: Sean Fitzgerald
Eugene Lamm Memorial Award for the most improved ESL student: Haozhang Li

Sylvia Mansfield Memorial Award and $200 stipend for ESL student(s) who have demonstrated great improvement in English: Yuqi Jin & Tamir Nyamdavaa

Next up was bandmaster WO2 Andrew “Freddie” Lomas with music awards.

welchjulia -- byECLTC E.R. Jackson Music Award for distinguished service to the music program: Robert Moore

COL Paul F. Cherches Memorial Award for the Most Valuable Band Member: Ethan Eisenmann

Streep Brothers Band Awards for loyalty, active participation, punctuality and good performance: sophomore Mitchell Duing, junior Sean Fitzgerald, senior Jacob Conyers

Following a performance of Like an Eagle by the Cadet Chorus, CPT Carl Estenik and SFC John Biddle took the stage to present military awards.

Master Sergeant Billy Crawford Memorial Award for Military Courtesy: Robert Van Huss
Military Policeman of the Year: Victor Armando Leon
Scottish Rite Free Mason Leadership Award: Ethan Istas
Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War JROTC Award for patriotism: Sean Hannagan
Daedalian JROTC Medal: Connor Cunningham
National Sojourners Award for encouragement and demonstration of Americanism: Sean Fitzgerald
Fusilier of the Year: Carlos Liriano
Daughters of the American Revolution History Medal for essay writing: Gabriel Elizondo
Raider of the Year: Kian Moriarty
Special Forces Association Medal for an Outstanding Raider: Jason Russell

choir_shoemaker2 -- byECDaughters of the American Revolution Award for outstanding ability and achievement: Oscar Cortada

Military Order of the World Wars Award for improvement in military and academic studies: Cody Allen

Military Officers Association of America Medal recognizing exceptional potential for military leadership: Ethan Eisenmann

gasteluma -- byECVeterans of Foreign Wars JROTC Award for excellence; and ROTC Distinguished Service Award for contributions to ROTC: Alfonso Leon

U.S. Daughters of 1812 Award for academic excellence, leadership and discipline: Turbold Tumurkhuu

Guests from multiple organizations also presented military and leadership awards.

Sons of the American Revolution medal for leadership and military bearing: Ngonga Mugabo
(Presented by Sons of the American Revolution representative Albert “Buff” Chance ’71)

Military Order of Purple Heart National Leadership Medal: Orlando Farias
(Presented by SSG Ralph Skelly, WWII veteran and recipient of The Purple Heart)

U.S. Army Recruiting Command Award for an outstanding scholar-athlete: Jesus Gracia
U.S. Army Recruiting Command Award in recognition of outstanding achievement
and contributions to the JROTC program:
Miguel Gonzalez
(Presented by SGT Nathaniel Herndon, U.S. Army National Guard Recruiting representative)

American Legion Award for Scholastic Excellence, upperclassman: Russell Holman
American Legion Award for Scholastic Excellence, underclassman: Aaron Thompson
American Legion Award for Military Excellence: Enkhbilegt Luvsandorj
(Presented by LTC John Buckwalter, American Legion Zone I-Vice Commander)

The following athletic awards were presented by Athletic Director MAJ Kevin Farley.

Babe Ruth Sportsmanship Award: Alejandro Gastelum
Joe D. Bailey Award for Most Dedicated Varsity Athlete: Robert Shields
Outstanding MMA Athlete: Sean Fitzgerald

giuseffi -- byECThe following discipline and leadership awards were presented by Commandant of Cadets LTC Greg Seibert.

Class of 1968 Freshman Leadership Award: Richard Choy

Meritas Plaque for Excellence in Discipline: Victor Arturo Leon, Julien Mugabo, Nyamkhuu Chinguun, Eduardo Gonzalez, Thomas Dean, Jose Elizondo, Turbold Tumurkhuu, Mitchell Duing, Yinzhou Wang, Gabriel Vallejo.

istas_albertsen_gonzalezem_choy -- byECRichard Hall Memorial Award for an Underclassman Who Best Exemplifies the True Gentleman: Gabriel Elizondo

Residential Faculty of the Year Award, given to the mentor who has made an impact on the lives of the cadets in their company: LT Zoe Alsbury

Following a performance of Benedictus by the MMA Band, Academy President Charles McGeorge presented a number of behavioral awards.

AMSCUS Medal for integrity, scholarship, leadership and service: Oscar Cortada
Steve Walker Memorial Award for an Outstanding First-Year Cadet: Jared Violette
Jack Meyers ’39, Memorial Cup for Most Creative Cadet: Naranmandakh Ayulgui
Otto Ferguson Aviation Award is given to the first cadet in the corps to fly solo: Mauro Garza

McGeorge also recognized staffers for their years of service to the Academy.

Five years: Edsel Baker, CPT Murrell Adams, Deanna Blair, Chad Herron, Julia Welch.
Fifteen years: David Cross, MAJ Ananta Khanal.
Twenty years: Melody Daly, MAJ Peggy Reynard.
Thirty years: LTC Willis Kleinsorge.


Following the Baccalaureate ceremony in the Memorial Chapel, seniors and their families headed to the Centennial Gymtorium for the 33rd annual Senior Banquet.

One by one, each senior stepped through an arch of sabers for the final time, then descended the stage and was formally inducted into the MMA Alumni Association. Each senior’s name, college choice and photograph were projected as he crossed the stage.

conyersToasts were led by five-year cadet and Senior Class President Yunil Jeon.

“Every single lesson we have learned from this school,” Jeon said, “will help us to make the correct decisions when we are out in the real world, when we are struggling.”

Connor Cunningham then delivered the Class Chronicle, which featured photographs of each member of the Class of 2016.

moorer3“No matter how long we have known each other, we are brothers for the rest of our lives,” Cunningham said.

Alumni Association President Jeffrey R. Kays ’84 next took the podium and spoke of the “shared heritage” of every MMA graduate. According to Kays, a nine-year cadet who served as Battalion Adjutant his senior year, not becoming involved sooner in the MMA Alumni Association was a big mistake.

“If we had never met before but we somehow met in passing, say at an airport or a football game, we would immediately have a bond,” Kays said. “Even though I am 33 years older than you and we are may be from different continents, we would immediately know something about each other because we shared some of the same experiences.”

carter1The following awards were presented during the Senior Banquet.

Richard Cooper ’82 Plaque for the senior with the longest unbroken tenure as a cadet: David Lazcano, 5 years

American Veterans Medal for Military Excellence: Russell Holman

American Veterans Medal for Leadership: Thomas Dean. (Presented by American Veterans of Missouri representative SGT Carol Thompson and CPT Carl Estenik.)

Alumni Plaque for the Senior Voted Most Likely to Succeed: Matheus Alexandre
William S. Lowe Trophy: Eduardo Gonzalez
COL Jerome G. Harris Cup for Soldierly Qualities: Rene Padilla

IMG_1741COL Veon McConnell Korean Trophy for a cadet officer who performs his duty with diligence: Alfonso Leon

Dr. Gregory “Doc” McDonald Award, given to the cadet who demonstrates the MMA Honor Code and values: Damdinbazar Sumiyabazar

Class of 1984 Unhearalded Leader Award, given to a senior cadet who is not an officer, but is respected by his classmates and is considered an instrumental part of pulling the class together: William Carter

The banquet concluded with the singing of Old MMA led by Cadet Chorus member Eduardo Gonzalez and a benediction led by Class Vice President Jose Estrada.


Senior students gathered on the parade field for the final time on the morning of May 28. During this special Battalion Review, Battalion Commander for the 2015-16 school year Mohammad Emran Babak ’16 presented incoming BC cadet Gregory Prinster ’17 with the Davison Saber. As the ceremony ended, cadets seniors marched toward the Centennial Gymtorium with their families following suit.

24_group_tumurkhuu_dean_leona_leea_snyder_byECThe 2016 Commencement ceremony began as faculty members and seniors performed their traditional march into the Centennial Gymtorium to the tune of Marche Militaire. Leading the procession was LTC Willis Kleinsorge with the Class of 2015 Mace. After the posting of the colors and the Pledge of Allegiance, Academy President Charles McGeorge took the stage to welcome attendees.

The following awards were presented by Associate Dean for the Middle School Edsel Baker and Academic Dean Dr. Frank Giuseffi.

Stribling Cup for Highest Efficiency in the Middle School: Nehemiah Simmons
Sen. Christopher S. Bond Award for Outstanding Middle School Underclassman: Nicolas Gonzalez
Plaque for Highest Scholarship in the Freshman Class: Angel Alcaraz
Plaque for Highest Scholarship in the Sophomore Class: Gabriel Vallejo
Plaque for Highest Scholarship in the Junior Class: Gregory Prinster

babak2Following performances of You Raise me Up and the Battle Hymn of the Republic by the Cadet Chorus, McGeorge took the stage to present two staff awards.

Abbott-Albright Faculty Award for Excellence in Teaching, awarded to the outstanding teacher for the academic year: Cheryl Morris

Heimos Trophy for a faculty or staff member voted by fellow faculty members to have done the most for the boys during the year: MAJ Mike Pemberton

gonzaleze_ayulguiSalutatorian and Class President Yunil Jeon next presented McGeorge with a $1,550 check from the senior class, which will purchase a Marine Corps bench for the memorial wall.

Up next were the discipline and highly-coveted company competition awards, which were presented by McGeorge.

Robert H. Weaver Memorial Award:
Dr. Russell Holman & Mrs. Laura Holman
(Given to those who best exemplify unconditional effort on behalf of the Academy and Corps of Cadets; work towards the goals established by the Parents & Alumni Committee; and display unceasing drive and commitment throughout the year to better life at the Academy.)

Fritsch Plaque and stipend for the eleventh grade cadet who exemplifies honor, good discipline, academic excellence and service: Alejandro Gastelum

holmanDorsey Anderson Class of 1895 Cup for the Cadet Exerting the Most Gentlemanly Example: Russell Holman

Red Ireland ’41 Trophy for a Fighting Heart, for the cadet who displays loyalty and courage: Donald Williams

Mustang Scholars Foundation Plaque, awarded to the cadet who promotes multiculturalism in the Corps: Matheus Alexandre

M-Club Award, Highest Disciplinary Standing & Highest Scholastic Standing: Band Company
Highest Athletic Standing & Highest Military Standing: Bravo Company
Company Spirit Award: Delta Company
Honor Company: Charlie Company

Don Hooton Class of 1919 Fellowship Cup, awarded to the cadet voted by the Corps to be the Senior Most Valuable to the Institution: Enkhbilegt Luvsandorj

Outstanding Performance by a Company Commander Plaque: Eduardo Gonzalez
Charles I. “Stony” Wall Class of 1922 Cup: Eduardo Gonzalez
neimeyer(The second-highest leadership award given to an MMA cadet. Awarded to a cadet who displays the traits of character, leadership, scholarship and service upon which the Academy was founded.)

Cadets Charles Eckardt and Emran Babak next took the stage to receive their Duke of Edinburgh’s Gold Medals, which were the first gold awards presented in the state of Missouri. For more information about their Adventurous Journey, click here. Babak next received the Legion of Honor, the highest award which can be given to an MMA cadet, which is awarded to an outstanding cadet who demonstrates industry, integrity, leadership and loyalty to MMA.

After receiving the Dr. James C. Olson Award for the Highest Scholarship in the Class of 2016, valedictorian Nishan Khanal took the stage to present his remarks. He was followed by commencement speaker Dr. Charles P. Neimeyer, Director of Marine Corps History and the Gray Research Center at Marine Corps University.

After a performance of The 1812 Overture by the MMA Band, seniors received their diplomas and walked across the stage, pausing to pose for a photographs. The ceremony concluded with the singing of Old MMA and the retiring of the colors.


The 127th Corps of Cadets marched from the Gymtorium to the front lawn, forming up for the final moments of their time as cadets at MMA. Family members and friends crowded the roped-off grass, snapping photos as seniors marched to the edge of Teardrop Lake. Upon command by Battalion Commander Emran Babak ’16, graduating seniors plunged their sabers into the grass, placed their hats upon their hilts, and saluted as the sound of Taps (led by bugler Mitchell Duing) echoed across the silent grounds.

As the final note faded, emotional seniors embraced one another for several minutes, tearfully hugging their brothers. The crowd of family members, faculty and friends soon flooded the grounds. A period of tearful goodbyes and hugs followed, as those with early flights home broke off and departed campus.

Help Support the Senior Class Gift: U.S. Marines Bench

IMG_9424Missouri Military Academy’s Memorial Wall features the names of MMA community members who have died serving their country. Nearby benches honor three of the four service academies — the U.S. Army, the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Air Force.

But not the U.S. Marines.

“When LET classes go down to the field house, seniors usually sit on the service benches and wait until we start moving,” senior class president Yunil Jeon said. “One day I figured out that we are missing: a U.S Marines bench. At that moment I figured that we, the senior class, should get one for the school!”

IMG_9430The 2016 Senior Class Gift was thus chosen. The Class of 2016 has thus far raised several hundred dollars by selling raffle tickets April 16 at the Festival of the Arts and hosting a pancake breakfast fundraiser that morning.

They still have a ways to go, however!
To help support our seniors and Marines, click here.

Missouri Military Academy’s 2016 Spring Family Weekend

4.16.16_nguyenderek_rodriguezc_courtLTCKOn April 16 and 17, cadets and their loved ones gathered for the annual Spring Family Weekend honoring mothers and grandmothers.


Spring Family Weekend began with the annual Mothers Tea at  10 a.m. Mothers, grandmothers and sisters donned festive hats and enjoyed tea, snacks and a presentation from Academy President Charles McGeorge. While the ladies gathered in the atrium, fathers and other guests perused the middle school science fair display in the second floor hallway.

First Place Overall & Eighth Grade First Place
Derek Nguyen & Carlos Rodriguez, Measuring Lung Capacity

Second Place Overall & Eighth Grade Second Place, TIE
Dongyang Chen, Dissolution of Sugar Cubes
Kevyn Bruce & Thomas Huckins, Producing Hydrogen

Eighth Grade
Third Place: Enrique Acevedo & Ethan Ford, The Big Black Worm
Fourth Place: Elian Harants & Isaac Perales, Elephant Toothpaste
Honorable Mention: Martin Farias & Joseph Kaplan, The Future of Transportation

Seventh Grade
First Place: Nicolas Gonzalez & Santiago Sanchez, Thermal Conductivity
Honorable Mention: Tamar Modise, The Big Bubble

Sixth Grade
First Place: Scout Jones, Electrolysis
Honorable Mention: Alexander Sheldon, Super Absorbent Polymer

IMG_9223_sheldon_blaue_robley_quinnFollowing the Mothers’ Tea, the Corps and their families gathered on the front lawn for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award presentation. Cadets marched down the circle drive and received their medals from Academy President Charles McGeorge.

Silver Medals
Yunil Jeon
Russell Holman

Bronze Medals
Nyamkhuu Chinguun
Sugar Dashdavaa
Davaasuren Dashdavaa
Hector Villanueva
Ramon Rodriguez
Oybek Kirkland
Alexander Seibert
Benjamin Snider-Bilbrey
Weitao Cong
Robert Shields
Alejandro Gastelum


The festivities continued Saturday evening with the annual Festival of the Arts, which featured songs by the High School Band, Jazz Band, Rock Band and Cadet Chorus. Performances were punctuated by the presentation of journalism, band, choir and art awards.

IMG_9106_TOUCHETTEThe Festival of the Arts was an amazing array of color and music filling the night with laughter, culture and talent. The band took the crowd on a journey from Star Trek to Korean culture. The Choir sang their hearts out to give their mentor and teacher the best last performance of his career. As we said goodbye to MAJ Mike Shoemaker and the choir seniors, they passed the torch to the next generation. JONATHAN JAMES ’16


Pearl Green Whitney Memorial Award: senior Brennan Morand
Throughout the year, Brennan has served as a marketing intern, daily sacrificing his limited free time to photograph school functions. An award-winning graphic designer, Brennan spent his fifth period every day making copies, running errands, taking photos and receiving real-world job experience.

Lyle C. Wilson Award: senior Justin Touchette
Justin is a talented photographer and two-year member of the yearbook staff who is to be commended for his outstanding dedication to the yearbook. Justin’s photographs won first place at the Presser Hall Performing Arts Center photography contest and third place in the Balfour Great Shot contest. His images of the 2014 Crucible were printed in the hardbound 2016 Balfour Yearbook Yearbook.4.19.16_MooreL_byEC

Each year, the journalism bar is awarded to those students who go above and beyond the basic duties of a cadet enrolled in a journalism course at MMA. Recipients of the journalism bar must display exemplary classroom conduct and significant written or photographic contribution to the production of the yearbook and newspaper.

Oscar Cortada
Christian Foster
Jonathan James
Scout Jones
Lucas Moore
William Moore
Brennan Morand
Nathan Nolan
Alexander Seibert
Justin Touchette


Philip Russell ’68 Award for outstanding first-year member of the men’s chorus: Robert Van Huss ’16

Outstanding Contribution to the MMA Chorus: Eduardo Gonzalez ’16

During the intermission, cadets and their families browsed the Epple Memorial Art Show, which was held in the Centennial Gymtorium mezzanine.

IMG_8845“In the festival I had about 6 pieces of art showing,” Christian Foster ’19 said. “When I got there, I saw that one of the staff had bought my best piece yet. It was a landscape made out of all four seasons.”

Most Improved Award: Juan Letamendi ’17
Best Unconventional Art Award: David Garza ’16
Heart & Soul Award (for the most dedicated): Hernan Huerta ’18
Norman Rockwell Award (for the best illustration): Hank Williams ’18, Eduardo Gonzalez ’16
Michelangelo Art Award (for the best in sculpture): Naranmandakh Ayulgui ’16
Junior School Art Achievement Award: Jesus Perales ’20
Art Achievement Award: Gabriel Perez ’18
Creative Arts Award: Gabriel Vallejo ’18
Vincent Van Gogh Art Award (for the best Painting student): Emilio Nanni ’16
Banksy Graffiti Art Award: Sugar Dashdavaa ’17, Yinzhou Wang ’17

IMG_8857Pablo Picasso Art Award (for always sketching and improving): Cesar Garcia ’20, Parker Koontz ’17

Leonardo Da Vinci Art Award (for being a writer, an artist and a renaissance man): Emran Babak ’16

Attendees also purchased tickets for the halftime heads-or-tails game, during which cadets raised $300 toward the senior class project. Oscar Garcia correctly guessed the outcome of the most coin flips and was declared the winner of the game.

I enjoyed being a part of the Concert Band and playing all of the songs that some people didn’t get to hear at Maroon and Gold. The Jazz Band and Rock Band were amazing too! Choir was cool since they switched it up a bit and choose to sing some newer songs from this generation. NELSON AGUILERA ’16

IMG_9072_lomasfreddie_jeonBAND AWARDS

Jeff Crain & Jeff Jorishie Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Jazz Ensemble: Ethan Eisenmann ’16

John Philip Sousa Band Award: Yunil Jeon ’16

New additions to the Festival of the Arts this year included an all-student punk rock band (Yunil Jeon, Connor Cunningham, Otto Albertsen, Noah Hacker, Paul Murphy and Ethan Eisenmann) and a bluegrass song by the Salty River Boys — sophomore William Moore on the banjo, mentor CPT Thomas Roberts on the guitar, choir director MAJ Mike Shoemaker on the bass and Choir members Robert Van Huss, Noah Hacker and Otto Albertsen.


The day began with a senior class pancake breakfast fundraiser in the MMA dining hall.

“The pancake breakfast was a fundraiser for the senior project to get a Marine bench to join the rest of the military branches outside the Canteen,” Jonathan James ’16 said.

IMG_9288_padillareneThe pancake breakfast was followed by a battalion review and flower pinning ceremony. During this traditional MMA event, mothers pin their cadet with a red carnation provided by MMA. Mothers and grandparents who could not attend were represented by a faculty member or other MMA mother.

The flower pinning ceremony warmed the hearts of all the mothers and their sons. It was a special day to show our MMA mothers how much we appreciate them. The battalion review followed. Each company showed their appreciation for their mothers by trying to win the review for their families. In the end Echo, ended up taking home the win. JONATHAN JAMES ’16

During the battalion review, one cadet from each LET class received the Superior Cadet Award via JROTC Order No. 12. Students received the honor for displaying leadership potential, discipline, courtesy, character and excellence in military and academic scholarship.

Mitchell Duing, LET I
John Curley, LET II
Gregory Prinster, LET III, Second Award
Enkhbilegt Luvsandorj, LET IV



CPT Olive’s cadets create unique Arthurian Legends board games

GRACIA2Second semester midterm exams were held during the last week of March. Though some teachers chose to administer traditional exams, CPT Robert Olive assigned a different task to his Arthurian Legends class – create your own working board game based on The Once and Future King.

Olive supplied small groups of students with blank boards, pieces, glue, scissors and empty cardboard boxes to create their games. On March 29 during the midterm exam period, he circled the classroom and awarded points as students played their board games.

Project partners Jesus Gracia, Rodrigo Garza Navarro, Jared Violette and Fahad Aliev created a game entitled, “The Arthurian Quest!” Each turn began with the rolling two dice. If players rolled doubles, they drew a “Double” card – if not, they drew a “Legend” card. Double cards gave special instructions, such as “Continue to the Mythical Forest” and “Merlin gives you advice – roll again.”  Legend cards posed questions about the novel, such as “How do Sir Grummore and Sir Palomides try to cure King Pellinore’s broken heart?”

HOLMAN_ESTRADA_HANNAGAN_GONZALEZE3Alexander Seibert, Hector Chapa, Wyatt Smith and Emran Babak named their creation “The Game of Arthurian Legends.” The game included “Legend” trivia cards – players who failed to answer their Legend question correctly lost their next turn – as well as “War” cards. When a player lands on a red “War” space, they must answer trivia questions back and forth with an opposing player. The first player who gets a question wrong moves back ten spaces.

Russell Holman, Sean Hannagan, Eduardo Gonzalez and Jose Estrada also created a game called “The Arthurian Quest.” In this version, the game is complete when the winner pulls a miniature, cardboard sword out of a small clay stone. Cadets also included power up spaces where players “transformed” into squirrel, fish or owl and moved forward extra spaces.

SPORTS BRIEFS: Tennis, Raiders & Lifeguards


As of April 2016, the following students have earned their Red Cross Lifeguard Certification at Missouri Military Academy. Requirements for the two-year Red Cross Life Guard Qualification included included a CPR/AED course, a 300-meter swim, a brick test and a two-minute endurance test in which students treaded water without their hands.

IMG_9686_willimonFahad Aliev
Weitao Cong
Oscar Cortada
John Curley
Aeron Lee
Jacob McMahon
Justtin Muilenburg
Juan Diego Silva Zuniga
Aaron Thompson
Evan Willimon

curley1The class was tough. What made it hard, though, were the long hours in the classroom with intermittent pool exercises. The hardest part was the final assessment, which included 2 tests and 3 live scenarios, all of which we had to perfect. … The majority of failures were for small mistakes — missing a few questions on the test or forgetting a certain procedure in the water, like giving detailed instructions to civilians, for example. I do not take the life of another lightly. I constantly think about the possibility of being in danger, and if I would feel confident in the abilities of the lifeguard present. JOHN CURLEY ’16


3.2.16_ChenYL_Eisenmann_zhangz_zhangs_eckardt_cepeda_zhouj_russell_schaaf_jin_wangy_lou_cong_ashton_webster_mitchell_choy_biddle_byEC1Eight members of the MMA Raiders team (Jason Russell, Kian Moriarty, Purevsuren Bayanbaatar, Charles Eckardt, Juan Cepeda, Ernesto Melgar, Zenghui Zhang and Victor Arturo Leon) competed April 2 at the Waynesville’s Raider Meet at Fort Leonard Wood.  The Colonels placed fourth overall of 12 teams, taking home first place in the 10k road march event with a time of 1 hour, 13 minutes.

IMG_4210“This event was actually 11.4K over very rough and hilly terrain,” Raider sponsor 1SG John Biddle said.

Cadets also took fourth place in the physical fitness test and fourth place in the one-rope bridge event, missing third place by only 20 seconds.

Judges of the six events included active duty drill sergeants, sapper soldiers and officers.


On April 1, the Colonels faced Helias Catholic High School at Washington Park Courts in Jefferson City. Cadets were IMG_1753_shields_bestdefeated 7-0 in a match cut short due to rain.

“The cadets did their best against a very good team from Helias Catholic,” Head Coach MAJ Mike Pemberton said. “Even though it was a tough match, the cadets kept battling and never quit. Overall, I was proud of their effort and hustle.”

On April 5, the Missouri Military Academy tennis team was defeated 1-7 by Fulton High School on the MMA courts. Ethan Istas defeated his Fulton opponent 10-2 in singles play. In exhibition doubles, Tyler Jansing and Ricardo Maceda won 6-6 (9-7).

“Even though we lost the match, I thought we came out and played pretty good tennis,” Head Coach MAJ Mike Pemberton said. “As a team, we are learning from our mistakes and showing signs of improvement.”

Winter Sports Banquet & FBLA bars

basketball_bissmeyer_fitzgerald_oldokhbayar_shields_chinguun_byambatsogt_leonva_elizondojWINTER SPORTS BANQUET

On February 24, student-athletes attended the annual Winter Sports Banquet in honor of the wrestling, varsity basketball and junior varsity basketball teams.

The evening began with an address by Athletic Director MAJ Kevin Farley, who spoke about teamwork and discipline in the face of adversity.

“We have a lot to look forward to in athletics. We are just now getting to make some changes,” Farley said, referring to a season in which many of their fellow student-athletes quit their 4_bowenteams. “All of you as individuals and as teams, you didn’t let that effect you. … This will become the most memorable part of your high school life because you faced those difficulties.”


Up next was first-year wrestling coach Jonathan Bowen, who recognized assistant coach Charles Fry on his ten-year anniversary as a wrestling coach at MMA.

Bowen then presented the following awards.
Most Improved: Styles Fountain
Newcomer of the Year:  Wyatt Brewer
Team MVP: Kenneth Wescott


First-year MMA assistant coach Megan Klukowski next took the podium to present junior varsity basketball awards.

“It was fun, simply because of the guys that were on the team,” Klukowski said of the season. “A lot of our guys got to play varsity. Everybody started getting playing time.”

6_pongsueaThe Leadership Award went to Donald Williams, while the Most Improved Award went to Photsavat Pongsuea.

Klukowski gave the Most Valuable Player award to Oybek Kirkland. She said the junior was “somebody I could rely on day in and day out” and rarely missed practice.

“This person always seemed to step up, always was laughing,” Klukowski said, presenting the Team Player Award to cadet Jean-Luc Shyaka.


The final speaker of the evening was first-year head coach LT Kevin Bissmeyer, who distributed the varsity basketball awards and letters.

“You guys worked hard and got better,” Bissmeyer said of the season. “Thank you to everybody from top to bottom, everybody that made tonight possible.”

9_bissmeyer_leonvThe first award Bissmeyer presented was the Most Valuable Player award to junior Bayar-Erdene Oldokhbayar.

“He was the most consistent player from beginning to end. He was our leading scorer. He was one of our top two assisters. He was a top four rebounder,” Bissmeyer said of Oldokhbayar. “He really stepped up.”

According to Bissmeyer, Most Improved Player award winner Robert Shields was a great player from day one but made huge improvements in attitude and coachability. The junior averaged approximately 15.5 points per game for the last six games.

3.24.16_SAGE_byFosterBissmeyer next presented the Best New Boy Award to Victor Leon and the Captain’s Award to Sean Fitzgerald.

“This award is more about someone who embodies everything that we want in an MMA athlete. He was without a doubt the captain of the team. The guy who helped other players figure out their place,” Bissmeyer said. “When there were conflicts between players, he helped to de-escalate them.  He was everything we needed in practice, going hard all the time.”


The following cadets received ribbons in recognition of their efforts at the Future Business Leaders of America District Six Leadership Conference on February 19. First Award presented for commitment and diligence in district competition. Second Award presented for placing in the top five in district competition and/or competing a successive year at district level.

2.22.16_maximovitch_reynard_pongsuea_shields_thompson_mertens_byambatosgt_khatigin_cortada_fitzgerald_khanal_fletes_moriarty_liriano_elizondog_leona_violette_estrada_wangy_mejia_byECFIRST AWARD (RIBBON)
Jose Balanza
Purevsuren Bayanbaatar
Juan Cepeda
Alejandro Gastelum

Bilguun Byambatsogt
Weitao Cong
Gabriel Elizondo
Sean Fitzgerald
Francisco Fletes
Nishan Khanal
Carlos Liriano
Kyle Mertens
Kian Moriarty
3.25.16_thompson_shields_pongsuea_reynardp_mejia_fitzgerald_leona_estrada_byambatsogt_gasteluma_khanal_balanza_aliev_khatigin_cepeda_curley_wangy_cong_fletes_liriano_mertens_byECPhotsavat Pongsuea
Robert Shields
Aaron Thompson
Jared Violette
Yinzhou Wang

Alfonso Leon
Jose Mejia

Fahad Aliev
Oscar Cortada
John Curley
Chinguun Khatigin

Jose Estrada



ACADEMIC BRIEFS: Shadow Day & Dissections


On January 12, the sixth grade class spent fourth period dissecting turkey wings in LTC Willis Kleinsorge’s science classroom.

Cadets donned protective goggles and aprons and wielded scalpels and scissors, separating the skin from the bones in order to view the muscles.

Kleinsorge also indicated a coloration change from pink tissue to white, from muscle to tendon. Cadets learned to identify bones, tendons, tissues, muscles, ball and socket joints and hinge joints.

“This is a muscle bundle,” Kleinsorge said. “That’s one muscle. Is that the bicep, tricep?”

IMG_0479_boydOn March 10, sixth graders again wielded scalpels and dissected animal tissues – this time the heart, esophagus and lungs of a cow.

Students began with the heart, identifying the cardiac muscle tissue, atrium and ventricle.

“See how small it is compared to the ventricle?” Kleinsorge said of the atrium. “The ventricle is huge.”

When examining the lungs, the class reflected on what effects smoking would have on the tissue.

“[The lung] becomes really hard and black,” Kleinsorge said. “It doesn’t allow the air to pass through there.”

The dissection lab ended with a discussion of the esophagus and vocal chords. As his classmates watched, Nathan Nolan blew into a bag attached to the esophagus and inflated the lungs.

3.10.16_camou_arredondo_byFosterMIDDLE SCHOOL SHADOW DAY

Eighth grade students got a taste of high school on March 10, as they shadowed freshmen and sophomores and attended upper-level classes.

Q: Why do you think shadow day is important?

To show what high school is going to be like. Zeth Colin ‘19

To help prepare middle school students for high school. Jordan Hornick ‘20

3.10.16_huckins_hamm1_byFosterQ: How was the day?

He was quiet in most of my classes. … He just looked on as we continued class as normal. Edward Cha ‘18

I learned about high school classes. Kevyn Bruce ’20

I thought it was really fun having my brother in class with me. He’s my brother and we get along pretty well. I taught him how to play some of the instruments in the band room. It was really fun having my brother learn with me. Jackson Ford ‘18

Q: Would you do it again?
Yes. It was fun. Alain Mestre ‘20
Yes. It was pretty unique. Richard Choy ‘19
Absolutely. Jackson Ford ‘18
Yes. I learned what my brother’s day was like. Ethan Ford ‘20

Cadets Take the Lead for Maroon & Gold!

listofteamsIn early February, the MMA Development office kicked off a cadet fundraising challenge to raise sponsorships and donations for Maroon and Gold 2016. The program, which is led by the Parents Committee and Annual Fund director Cassandra Brooks, offered a fun competition and incentives.

Eleven teams of cadets – mixed up throughout the companies – vied to raise the most funds for Maroon and Gold, which supports the Academy’s overall program needs.

February 18: During noon mess, cadet Carlos Liriano ’18 received a gift card in the raffle drawing, while Alain Mestre ’20 received a gift card for writing the most thank you letters. As of noon mess, cadets had raised approximately $7,100 in only two days. That evening, Team Silva-Linings used their computers and phones to solicit donations, sending messages to people all over the world. Cadets raised $1,000 within minutes!

IMG_9087At Team First Forte’s meeting February 18, captain Francisco Fletes ’18 said he feels the fundraiser is his first “real marketing job.”

“We are all working together to make this campus better,” Fletes said.

February 19: Cadets have raised more than $10,000 as of noon mess. The showerhead contest standings thus far are as follows: First Place: Echo Company. Second Place: Bravo Company. Third Place: Band Company. Fourth Place: Delta Company. Fifth Place: Charlie Company.

2.18.16_Liriano_Brooks_ECFebruary 22: Total raised: $18,395. Band Company is leading the showerhead competition, followed by Bravo in second and Echo in third. The team closest to having 100 percent of team members raising $250 or more — the prize for which is a pizza party — is Team Maroon & Cadets.

February 23: As of noon mess, cadets have raised a total of $23,345.50 in just one week. Band Company remains in first place in the showerhead competition, followed by Bravo in second and Delta in third. Garrett Stafford was chosen as the raffle winner while Jon Snyder of Team We Will Hold earned a “Genius Idea” prize. Snyder designed a team marketing and fundraising poster that he and his teammates will send to possible donors.

IMG_9435February 26: Cadets have raised $29,225.50 thus far and will continue to seek donations until Tuesday. Team Magnus has stolen the lead in the day trip prize contest from Team We Will Hold, who has held the lead since the competition began. Bravo Company remains in the lead for the showerhead competition. Grand prizes — an $1,000 Amazon gift card, an Apple Watch, a GoPro HERO4 and an Alienware gaming laptop — will be selected via raffle on noon mess Wednesday.

March 2: On the final day of the competition, raffle winners were announced at noon mess. Cadets raised a total of $31,955.50. Bravo Company won the deluxe showerheads, which were installed March 16.

$1000 Amazon Gift Card – Gabriel Perez ‘18
Alienware Gaming Laptop – Russell Holman ‘16
GoPro HER04 – Robert Moore ‘16
Apple Watch – Hector Chapa Gonzalez ‘16

2.18.16_MostThankYouLetters_Mestre_ECABOUT MAROON & GOLD

Since its inception circa 2005, the Annual Maroon and Gold Event has become Missouri Military Academy’s premier fundraising event.   The Maroon and Gold Event will be held on Saturday, April 2, 2016 in the Khorassan Ballroom at the Chase Park Plaza Hotel in St. Louis.  Over the past five years this gala event has doubled in attendance numbers and has raised over $100,000 for improved Academy programs, equipment and cadet life initiatives.

The event annually features the presentation of the Gen. Clifton B. Cates, MMA class of 1910 “I Will Hold” Award for Leadership, which recognizes exceptional leaders who have demonstrated determination, steadfastness and perseverance through times of challenge.

The 2016 “I Will Hold” award recipient is LCDR Eric Greitens, former Navy SEAL and combat veteran who served four tours of duty overseas, including in Afghanistan and Iraq. After coming home, he founded The Mission Continues, a Missouri-based non-profit that helps returning veterans get back on their feet and give back to their communities. In 2014, Fortune Magazine named Eric one of the “World’s 50 Greatest Leaders.” Born and raised in Missouri, Eric attended Missouri public schools, earned a scholarship to college, and went on to become a Rhodes Scholar. He has a black belt in 2.19.16_Mulvey_byECTaekwondo and is an author, marathon runner, and boxing champion.

Those interested in sponsoring the event can contact Kevin Quinn, MMA’s director of development, at; or 573-581-1776 Ext 230. Donors can direct their sponsorship to a particular team or company total.

All alumni and friends of MMA are invited to attend the event. Ticket information can be found on the MMA website:

Valentine Weekend Highlights


Eight cadets and two staffers joined 160 fellow participants and took the Mexico Polar Plunge on February 13 at Plunkett Park.

“A group of cadets took on the challenge of plunging into a cold lake during freezing temperatures,” Jonathan James ’16 said.

12711282_1692471871034231_4954453163730649556_oKiwanis Lake was frozen over except for a small chunk cut out for the Plunge. The temperature high during the Plunge was 22 degrees.
MMA donated $500, which contributed to the weekend’s total donations of $24,000 toward Special Olympics Missouri. SOMO provides a year-round program of sports training and competition for children and adults with intellectual disabilities.

Because I love doing charity fundraisers. JONATHAN JAMES ‘16
I took the Polar Plunge because it was for a good cause. JEREMY ELKINS ‘17

12698395_1692471391034279_7404412611269964716_oHOW DID THE WATER FEEL?
The water was so cold that it stung you. It was a rush of cold that went through your body. JONATHAN JAMES ‘16
The water was definitely below freezing. … After I got out, I couldn’t feel my feet for an hour so it must have been really cold. My whole body went numb after I dunked my head. NOAH WEBSTER ‘18
I think the water was like 1,000,000 degrees below zero. It felt like my whole body was going to freeze! My hair froze and I couldn’t feel my feet or my hands for almost an hour. JEREMY ELKINS ‘17

Yes. It was a lot of fun and we overcame our fears. JONATHAN JAMES ‘16
I might do it again if I get the option to. JEREMY ELKINS ‘17

IMG_1592_hacker_albertsenUKULELE DUO

At the Valentine Ball on February 13, amateur ukulele enthusiasts and MMA sophomores Otto Albertsen and Noah Hacker entertained cadets, staffers and their families with love songs “Can’t Help Falling in Love” and “You and I.”


I first attempted to play the ukulele last year, when a friend lent me his for me to try and play a song I had heard. Winter break 2014 came around and I began teaching myself the acoustic guitar. After falling in love with the instrument, I decided I wanted something a little more portable and easy to take with me anywhere I go. I received a new Córdoba over the 2015 winter break and I have instinctively played it every day since. OTTO ALBERTSEN ’18

I’ve played ukulele for only two months now. My parents got me a ukulele of Christmas for a present and I immediately fell in love with it. I’m basically in love with the sound and style of the ukulele — its tropical, cute and happy tone. NOAH HACKER ‘18


The song I played was called “Can’t Help Falling in Love.” I heard the original by Elvis Presley far before I even picked up a ukulele. I always enjoyed the song but it wasn’t until I heard a cover by my favorite band that I decided I wanted to learn it. OTTO ALBERTSEN ’18

The ukulele song I played was called “You and I.” My mother and I used to listen to the song when I was young. But after years rolled by, I forgot the song existed. I remember hearing the song again on a commercial. It basically was memory lane with the song, so I decided this was the perfect song to play for the dance. NOAH HACKER ‘18

Playing for the Valentines Ball was a good experience, considering it was the first time I had played the uke in front of an audience. I was very nervous leading up to the performance, but
when I stood millimeters away from the mic, I kind of forgot I was even playing. OTTO ALBERTSEN ‘18

IMG_1590_albertsenI felt very nervous at first going up on the stage. I was afraid of people judging me on how I played. But I just decided I’m not going to allow someone’s opinion to affect the things I love the most. I want to motivate people to be themselves for what they love and what they enjoy without people judging them and affecting them. We can’t let people how they think of us effect who we are. NOAH HACKER ‘18 

All kinds of music are my favorite. NOAH HACKER ‘18 



DSC_9720_kleinsorge_knipfer_gastelumI_bestCHANGING STATE OF MATTER LAB, MS SCIENCE

LTC Willis Kleinsorge’s eighth grade students conducted a Changing State of Matter experiment on February 12. Students filled beakers with solid snow, then heated it and observed as the substance changed from solid to liquid to gaseous states.

“The snow changed into slush and the water,” Kaplan wrote in his lab chart at the four minute mark. “There are bubbles in the snow.”

Caleb Cloyde’s snow began to melt at one minute in, rising to a temperature of one degree Celsius.

As his classmates began their snow boil lab, Martin Farias continued an individual Electrolysis Lab with water, salt water, sugar water and vinegar.


On January 28, eighth grade cadets in LTC Willis Kleinsorge’s classes mixed combinations of three liquids and four powders (baking powder, corn starch, baking soda, sugar, water, vinegar and iodine solution) to determine whether their reactions were chemical or physical.

IMG_6820_arredondo_bestCadets have learned to describe matter based on its physical and chemical properties. Cadets have also learned some signs that can help them determine whether a change in matter is a physical change or a chemical change. In this lab, cadets used what they have learned to describe four substances based on their properties and the changes that they undergo. LTC WILLIS KLEINSORGE


160215_007On February 15, a group of MAJ Mike Pemberton’s Environmental Science and Biology students visited Monsanto Company in Chesterfield, MO. Monsanto is an agricultural company that delivers products for farmers all around the world. They are focused on empowering farmers (large or small) to produce more from their land while conserving natural resources such as water and energy.

160215_014Our desire to tour their facility came from our studies in genetics and ecology. Part of our curriculum in both Biology and Environmental Science focuses on the importance of plants. Like Monsanto, our cadets study different ways to make agriculture more productive and sustainable.

Our tour started with a group experiment. In one of Monsanto’s research labs, cadets were able to extract and observe strawberry DNA. They learned each step’s importance and why scientists extract DNA from organisms.  After the experiment, the cadets were split into two groups to tour the facilities.  Some of the stops on the tour included research labs, a biotechnology center, and various greenhouses.


On February 19, cadets in first-year science instructor Veronica Anderson third period class raced handmade balloon cars to demonstrate Newton’s third law. Each cadet designed and constructed one or more miniature cars and adjusted the design over several class periods. Materials included Lifesaver candies, CDs, duct tape, scotch tape, construction paper, Styrofoam cups and straws.

Anderson’s students also conducted a Single Displacement Lab on February 16 and wrote lab reports about their findings. Using stoichiometry, students calculated the amount of aluminum needed to turn copper sulfate crystals from blue to brown via single-displacement reactions.

IMG_9004_puente_ashton_hammDISSECTING FROGS

On January 28, cadets in MAJ Mike Pemberton’s fifth hour class began their dissection of leopard frogs.

Students started with a visual inspection of the external anatomy, determining the gender of their specimen based on the frog’s size (female frogs are usually larger) and digits (male frogs have thick thumb pads.) After examining the head anatomy – mouth, external nares, tympani, eyes and nictitating membranes – cadets pinned down their specimen’s legs and cut the hinges of the lips to open their frog’s mouth.

IMG_8897The internal investigation began with the identification of mouth structures – teeth, glottis, pharynx, esophagus, tongue, internal nares and Eustachian tube – and continued with the digestive system – stomach, intestines, liver, pancreas, etc. Cadets finished their dissection by confirming gender based on the reproductive system of their specimen.

Additional frog specimens were dissected by Rachel Yim’s classes in mid-February.

Academic Fourragere, February 2016

PPAboyd_IMG_5688_Mestre_BESTThe following cadets received Academic Fourragere via Special Orders No. 33 and 34, having shown outstanding academic achievement during marking periods two (MP2) and three (MP3).

Angel Alcaraz (MP2 & MP3)
Matheus Alexandre (MP2 & MP3)
Fahad Aliev (MP2 & MP3)
Babak (MP2 & MP3)
Purevsuren Bayanbaatar (MP2)
Wyatt Brewer (MP3)
Edward Cha (MP2)
Hector Chapa (MP2)
Dongyang Chen (MP2 & MP3)
Nyamkhuu Chinguun (MP2 & MP3)
Richard Choy (MP3)
Connor Cunningham (MP2)
Davaasuren Dashdavaa (MP2)
Mitchell Duing (MP2 & MP3)
Jose Elizondo (MP2 & MP3)
Francisco Fletes (MP2)
David Garza (MP2 & MP3)
Miguel Gonzalez (MP2)
Samuel Guo (MP2 & MP3)
Sean Hannagan (MP2)
Jordan Hornick (MP2 & MP3)
Thomas Huckins (MP3)
Hernan Huerta (MP2)
Yun Il Jeon (MP2 & MP3)
Scout Jones (MP2 & MP3)
Eric Juarez (MP3)
Nishan Khanal (MP2 & MP3)
Chinguun Khatigin (MP2 & MP3)
Thomas Kiefer (MP3)
Private First Class Oybek Kirkland (MP2 & MP3)
Private First Class Qiyu Liu (MP2 & MP3)
Enkhbilegt Luvsandorj (MP2)
Kyle Mertens (MP2)
Brennan Morand (MP2 & MP3)
Ngonga Mugabo (MP2 & MP3)
Paul Murphy (MP2)khanal4
Michael Naughton (MP2 & MP3)
Bayar-Erdene Oldokhbayar (MP2 & MP3)
Gabriel Perez (MP2 & MP3)
Photsavat Pongsuea (MP2 & MP3)
Gregory Prinster (MP2 & MP3)
Santiago Sanchez (MP2)
Alexander Schaaf (MP3)
Alexander Seibert (MP2 & MP3)
Jorge Servin (MP2)
Nehemiah Simmons (MP2 & MP3)
Benjamin Snider (MP2 & MP3)
Damdinbazar Sumiyabazar (MP2)
Gabriel Vallejo (MP2 & MP3)
Hector Villanueva (MP2 & MP3)
Jared Violette (MP3)
Yinzhou Wang (MP2 & MP3)
Michael Wetzel (MP2 & MP3)
Rongyang Yi (MP2 & MP3)

WEEKEND BRIEFS: Wrestling, Rifle & FBLA

1.13.16_FBLAbars_Khatigin_Mejia_vantasell_garzam_gonzalezm_aliev_leona_estrada_byECFUTURE BUSINESS LEADERS OF AMERICA

Having scored well on their online tests, fifteen MMA cadets will compete in individual and team events at the Future Business Leaders of America District 6 Leadership Conference on February 19. FBLA members, listed below by name and FBLA event, must score in the top 8 for their event to compete at districts.

John Curley – Future Business Leader
Nishan Khanal, Kyle Mertens and Jared Violette – Global Business
Fahad Aliev, Bilguun Byambatsogt and Oscar Cortada – Hospitality Management
Nishan Khanal, Kyle Mertens and Kian Moriarty – Management Decision Making
Oscar Cortada, Jose Estrada and Jared Violette – Marketing
Sean Fitzgerald and Robert Shields – Sports and Entertainment Management
Alfonso Leon – Website Management
Carlos Liriano and Aaron Thompson — Entrepreneurship
Sean Fitzgerald, Photsavat Pongsuea and Robert Shields — Business Ethics


Missouri Military Academy fell 1342-1434 versus Wentworth on January 22. Ethan Istas won the gold medal with a score of 238.


On January 23, MMA competed at the Hickman Varsity Invite 2016 against teams from 12 opposing schools. Francisco Siller (220 lb) placed seventh and Styles Fountain (126 lb) placed 9th, scoring scored 3 team points by winning by decision over his Rock Bridge opponent.

LT Bissmeyer’s history students stage authentic Southern Duel

GROUP2_chapa_shields_schaaf_sniderb_lomasfinley_istas_wetzel_bissmeyer_elizondogOn December 15, high school students in LT Kevin Bissmeyer’s third hour U.S. history class met on the battlefield (Colonels Field) to defend their honor in a traditional southern (paintball) duel. The authentic re-enactment included performances by middle school drummers and was staged for an audience of students and staffers.

According to Bissmeyer, the exercise is designed to expose students to an aspect of  17th to 19th century southern American culture that they may not be aware of.

There existed a tradition and culture of honor which permeated every part of society. This tradition of honor began with the European nobility, spread down to the planter class and eventually came to embody the southern culture  as a whole, regardless of socio-economic standing. You wereIMG_2114_muilenburg_schaaf judged first as a man of honor, and secondly as a man of accomplishment. With personal honor playing such an important role, the stakes were obviously high. Insults to one’s honor were taken seriously, often ending in one man being “posted” or exposed in the local newspapers. A second way of challenging the honor of another man or proving your own honor was to engage in a duel.

Duels are not as action-packed as they seem in western movies. They were instead a social event intended to show the honor of each participant. The duel rarely ended in death and often ended without either target being hit. However, there were also occasions where a duel with pistols devolved IMG_2090_sniderbilbreyinto duels with swords and did not end until one party or the other was dead. This was certainly not the norm, however. A standard duel begins with an insult, at which point the two involved parties must name their seconds. The second is then tasked with coordinating this duel while upholding the honor and dignity of the two involved parties, known as the principles. LT KEVIN BISSMEYER

The MMA re-enactment began with a fake “insulting” e-mail exchange between students and a challenge to each party’s honor. Next were explanatory e-mails to each second, followed by an e-mail from each party’s second to the offending principle’s second. Seconds were then required to arrange the duels in no more than four e-mails.

IIMG_2002_sniderbilbrey_shieldsn history class we are studying duels in the American South, so we decided to go through the process ourselves. I was given the job of giving the initial insult and then participating in the duel. We tried to mimic the dueling process as best as we could and I think it turned out well. I shot my opponent with a paintball gun and he didn’t hit me so that counted as a win. I think for the time, dueling was a good way to keep social order. And considering dueling did not actually end in death most of the time, it was not too brutal. BENJAMIN SNIDER-BILBREY ’17

IMG_1975_wetzel_istasBenjamin Snider, with Rob Shields as his second, defeated Alexander Schaaf and his second Gabriel Elizondo. Hector Chapa and his second Ethan Istas were bested by Finley Lomas and his second Michael Wetzel. Bissmeyer acted as judge, while Justtin Muilenburg served as the medical examiner.

The duel consisted of defending the honor of the insulted person, which in this case was Finley Lomas being dishonored by Hector Chapa. He had to fight in order to keep his honor intact. My job in the duel was to do everything for Lomas. Lomas assigned me as his second, and the second’s job is to set up everything for the duel. I had to send a letter to Chapa’s second, who was Ethan Istas, telling him that Lomas wanted to protect his honor that had been insulted. In the duel, my job was to make sure Lomas would not quit and also to make sure everything was set up — place, time, weapon. I think the result was amazing. Lomas made an accurate “deadly shot” at Chapa’s head and Lomas’ honor was not harmed. I think the way people used to duel was really impressive. … The way they organized the duel was really savage. Shooting each other at 10 or 20 paces really requires courage. MICHAEL WETZEL ’17

STA_STA_BISSMEYER_KEVINBissmeyer is a football, basketball and lacrosse coach at MMA and started his second year at the Academy this fall. After earning a Bachelor of Arts in history at the University of Cincinatti, he went on to earn a Masters of Education from Xavier University. A former Chatfield College professor, he served as a museum guide at the Cincinnati History Museum, taught high school history in Ohio and coached lacrosse at the high school and college levels.



Pressing down the tip of the scalpel just above the umbilical cord, senior Jose Estrada made the first of many incisions during a fetal pig dissection December 16.

Fifth period biochemistry students Estrada and senior Jared Violette first donned safety goggles, gloves and aprons in preparation for their examination.

“Biochemistry students have been studying human anatomy and physiology, and the fetal pig dissection was the final project for the unit,” high school science instructor Rachel Yim said. “The students did a very careful and thorough dissection.”

Cadets began by determining the animal’s gender (male) and securing each of the specimen’s legs to a corner of their operating pan to allow for easier internal incisions.

The duo began their examination in the thoracic (chest) cavity, dissecting the thymus, thyroid, heart, lungs and trachea. In the abdominal cavity, cadets identified and dissected the stomach, spleen, pancreas, liver, small and large intestines, kidneys, bladder and testes. Body systems explored included the respiratory, urinary, reproductive and cardiovascular systems.

IMG_9280_nguyenderek_bruce_HuckinsMIDDLE SCHOOL: SYRUP SALESMEN

Eighth grade science students Derek Nguyen, Kevyn Bruce and Thomas Huckins became syrup salesmen December 17, competing to “sell” their company’s product to their “consumer” LTC Willis Kleinsorge.

In the Viscosity Challenge activity, small groups of cadets argued that their brand was the best buy on the basis of viscosity. Before an audience of their classmates, each group demonstrated the superiority of their product when compared to both expensive competitors and cheaper generics.

IMG_9285_nguyenderek_bruce_HuckinsNguyen, Bruce and Huckins compared and contrasted Hungry Jack, Log Cabin, Country Kitchen, Mrs. Butterworth’s and generic Great Value syrups. The trio demonstrated the viscosity of each substance by pouring small amounts of all five down a short ramp and monitoring the speed of their descent.

Other groups of students reviewed shampoo brands and dishwashing detergent products. Each group of cadets developed a means of testing for the physical property of viscosity; ran trials while manipulating the variables; collected data; created tables and graphs of their data; and drafted a business letter to a company represented in their mock investigations. Students could also earn extra credit by developing an advertisement to sell their product to customers.


In late September, each of Veronica Anderson’s students drew the name of a chemical element and decorated a ceiling tile with the properties of their assigned element.

+ Used in streetlights, produces brilliant yellow light
+ Sixth-most abundant metal in the Earth’s crust

+ Atomic number 30
+ Used to treat: stunted growth, acute diarrhea, wound healing

+ Discovered in 1797
+ Atomic number 24
+ First element in Group 6
+ Gray, lustrous, hard and brittle metal
+ Resists tarnishing and has a high melting point
+ CR Oxide used by Chinese over 2000 years ago to cast metal weapons found with the Terracotta Army

Was discovered in 1753 by Claude
+ Ingredient in Pepto Bismol
+ Used to cure heartburn
+ Used in cosmetics

+ Gold is edible
+ 24K gold melts at 1945 °F
+ Aurophobia is the fear of gold
+ Gold is a noble metal
+ Gold is extremely ductile

+ Used in batteries
+ Boiling Point: 2,888 °F
+ Phase at Room Temperature: Solid
+ Density: 6.684 g/cm3

Forty-five cadets earn Academic Fourragere

fourragereforwebAs per Special Order No. 20, forty-five middle and high school students received Academic Fourragere on November 15, having displayed outstanding academic achievement for the first marking period.

Private Angel Alcaraz
Master Sergeant Fahad Aliev
First Lieutenant Mohammad Babak
Sergeant First Class Purevsuren Bayanbaatar
Master Sergeant Bilguun Byambatsogt
Private First Class Juan Cepeda
Private Edward Cha, Syosset
Private Dongyang Chen
First Sergeant Oscar Cortada
Private Drake Davis
Sergeant First Class Thomas Dean
Private Jose Elizondo
Master Sergeant Orlando Farias
Private First Class Francisco Fletes
Master Sergeant Mauro Garza
Private Malachi Grice
Private Samuel Guo
Master Sergeant Russell Holman
Private Second Class Jordan Hornick
Second Lieutenant Yun Il Jeon
Private Scout Jones
Corporal Nishan Khanal
Sergeant First Class Chinguun Khatigin
Private First Class Oybek Kirkland
Second Lieutenant David Lazcano
Private First Class Qiyu Liu
Second Lieutenant Enkhbilegt Luvsandorj
Private Zhicheng Mao
Private First Class Gavin Martin
Private First Class Kyle Mertens
Sergeant Ngonga Mugabo
Private Second Class Michael Naughton
Corporal Bayar-Erdene Oldokhbayar
Sergeant First Class Christian Paz
Private Gabriel Perez
Corporal Photsavat Pongsuea
Sergeant Gregory Prinster
Private Santiago Sanchez
Private Nehemiah Simmons
Private Ulysses Suarez
Private First Class Gabriel Vallejo
Sergeant Hector Villanueva
Private Jared Violette
Private Yinzhou Wang
Private Xin Xia