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New ROTC staffer has military service in her blood

March 7, 2003

By Marion Hixon

Baylor Air Force ROTC recently added Staff Sgt. Wendy McDowell to their faculty as a noncommissioned officer, and she is already busy at work.

McDowell has been assigned to Baylor's campus on a special duty assignment. She will be dealing with maintaining records and files and is currently updating the cadets' fitness scores, replying to invoices and attending to minor computer maintenance. In the near future, McDowell will proctor the Air Force Officer Qualifying Tests.

'I can definitely say that this job has been a challenge so far,' she said.

McDowell was born in Cleveland but was most recently stationed at Charleston Air Force Base in South Carolina. From a young age, McDowell says she has felt a strong desire to serve her country. In addition, she hails from a family with strong military background. Because of these factors, McDowell was prompted to join the United States Air Force.

Sgt. Terrance Gibson has worked closely with McDowell since her arrival and said he is impressed by her work.

'Sgt. McDowell is already exemplifying the qualities demanded of her as an NCO,' Gibson said. 'She's presently in a training mode but is eager to learn, and her prior experience will be a definite plus in making the ROTC detachment at Baylor the best in the country.'

McDowell noted the diligence and friendliness of the cadets since she has begun working at Baylor.

'I come from a squadron of about 400 people, where cohesiveness is less likely,' McDowell said. 'When I came here, the first thing I noticed was the camaraderie and morale amongst the cadets.'

McDowell has served as a sergeant in numerous positions on bases worldwide. Aside from being stationed in the United States, some of her past locations include Turkey, Greece, Italy, Spain, Egypt, Bosnia, Portugal and Africa.

When asked which experience she has enjoyed most, McDowell responded quickly, saying that her job in west Cairo, Egypt, was her favorite. While there, she was able to spend 90 days on a project titled Operation Restore Hope and visited Mombasa, Kenya, and Mogadishu, Somalia, to load and unload cargo planes.

Air Force members can be located at a certain base anywhere from two years to the entirety of one's career. McDowell is scheduled to spend three years at Baylor on her assignment. She looks forward to getting to know more of the cadets.

She attended school at the University of Maryland and Trident Technical College in North Carolina. At both colleges she took classes through the ROTC program.