Published: Aug 14, 2007
By Robin Roger
junior Elizabeth Larke prepared to launch herself off a 33-foot high
rappelling wall, she smiled a half smile, a mixture of apprehension and
exhilaration. She had done this before, but never in front of a camera.
was a little weird to have a camera in my face, but that’s what made it
so fun,” she said of a photo shoot on The University of Tampa campus.
“It basically captured all the things that a cadet will be able to do in
the ROTC program.”
Larke was one of several UT cadets who
participated in the photo shoot for the ROTC’s new print advertising
campaign. Last spring, the Army hired celebrity photographer Chris
McPherson to shoot photos of cadets at both The University of Tampa and
Florida International University in Miami.
The resulting print
ads will appear in national media outlets and can be used by local
battalions in billboards, banner ads, brochures and newspapers. Larke
and her cohorts will start cropping up in advertisements and brochures
as the face of the Army’s ROTC program this fall.
shoot has great potential to boost our ROTC program, since it can
potentially make our cadets local celebrities and help us in terms of
recruiting in the future,” said Karen Parker, battalion executive
officer for UT’s ROTC program
decision to utilize The University of Tampa as the setting was a great
choice, given the beauty UT’s campus represents, the success of our ROTC
program and the outstanding cadets we commission as second lieutenants
The cadets displayed great enthusiasm, diversity and an array of very attractive visual qualities, she added.
June of McCann Advertising said the cadets at UT were all very
articulate and photogenic. Out of the 54 cadets, 40 were featured in the
shoots organized by the advertising firm.
The Army chose to
photograph real cadets in their own uniforms, using models for parents
and classmates. UT had a number of solid performing cadets who
represented a diverse cross section of the army officer corps, said
Major Angela Hildebrant, chief of marketing for the U.S. Army Cadet
Command. Plus, the weather made Tampa an ideal location in which to
The Army has not made any new promotional materials for
its ROTC program since it jettisoned its “An Army of One” slogan last
fall. Now it is revamping its advertising to reflect the new motto:
“This time we were looking for something that
would not only resonate, but endure,” said Hildebrant. “There’s strong,
and then there’s Army strong.”
Hildebrant said the Army is
looking for solid performing cadets who represent a diverse cross
section, to show just how diverse the army officer corps is.
Junior J.K. Karlsson’s black, newly polished shoes baked in the sun as he awaited his close-up in his ROTC uniform.
“This is a great honor for our battalion,” said Karlsson, who posed with flags waving behind him.