Prep School graduates 194 cadet-candidates

Col. Jacqueline Breeden, commander of the U.S. Air Force Academy Preparatory School, gives a prep school diploma to a graduating cadet-candidate May 18, 2017, at the Community Center Theater. In all, 194 cadet-candidates graduated and 186 cadet-candidates received appointments to the Academy. (U.S. Air Force photo/Jason Gutierrez)

Col. Jacqueline Breeden, commander of the U.S. Air Force Academy Preparatory School, gives a prep school diploma to a graduating cadet-candidate May 18, 2017, at the Community Center Theater. In all, 194 cadet-candidates graduated and 186 cadet-candidates received appointments to the Academy. (U.S. Air Force photo/Jason Gutierrez)

U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY, Colo. --

One-hundred-ninety-four cadet-candidates graduated from the Air Force Academy Preparatory School during a ceremony May 18.

 

Of those graduates, 186 received appointments to the Academy.

 

The cadet-candidates completed the school’s 10-month curriculum, designed to prepare them to succeed and lead at the Air Force Academy. 

 

As part of the curriculum, the prep school emphasized learning in academics, military training, athletics and character development. 

 

“I am so very proud of you,” said Col. Jacqueline Breeden, Preparatory School commander, as she addressed the graduates. “Congratulations. Safe travels on your journey and aim high.”

The colonel shared three lessons with the cadet-candidates. 

 

“First, the Air Force core values of integrity first, service before self and excellence in all we do are timeless and they transcend military service,” Breeden said.

 

Secondly, she said commitment is critical to achieving success and besting any challenges they will face.

 

“Point three is perseverance,” Breeden said. “Perseverance pays off. You will face obstacles in your journey, which will test your resolve physically and mentally. Rally around each other. Be a source of encouragement. And when your perseverance wavers, look one another in the eye and you’re going to say, ‘you got this.’”

 

Cadet 1st Class Juan Orozco, 2013 prep school graduate and Academy class of 2017, served as the guest speaker.

 

“Failure is going to come and when it does, you can’t let it deter you,” Orozco said. “Don’t let failure close opportunities for you. Instead, make it create new ones.”

 

He encouraged the cadet-candidates to “do the little things right” to allow big things to happen.

 

“With those lessons, I hope you can apply them in your cadet careers and beyond,” Orozco said.

The ceremony culminated the prep school’s three-day graduation tradition, which included a reception, baccalaureate ceremony, and graduation parade and awards ceremony.