Citadel Knobs earn their Recognition Day

Photo Courtesy: The Citadel

Learning to Lead: The next step for the Class of 2014 Recognition Day a milestone in a Citadel cadet's life at college

CHARLESTON, S.C. -- On Saturday 624 freshmen worked together and persevered during Recognition Day events at The Citadel, marking the end of the strict Fourth Class System and the first steps in becoming leaders in the Corps of Cadets.

Recognition Day is the day that the freshmen are recognized by name rather than by "knob." Among the privileges they receive are an end to the shorn heads characteristic of knobs and the freedom to walk at a normal pace around campus instead of the knob 120 steps a minute. The day began just before 6 a.m. with a physical training for the 2,100-member Corps of Cadets and was followed by leadership instruction for the knobs, the physically demanding Gauntlet team challenge course and the recognition ceremony in each of the five cadet battalions.

"Recognition Day is a significant benchmark in a cadets' journey toward becoming a principled leader," said Cadet Col. Cory Moyer, the regimental commander. "The freshmen have completed a challenging and demanding Fourth Class System and it is because of their dedication and commitment to teamwork that they have succeeded to this point."
The Citadel's eight-month-long Fourth Class System lays the foundation early in a cadet's career for the development, character and discipline implied in the college's mission of educating principled leaders.

"Recognition Day does not signify an end of cadet development," said Commandant of Cadets Col. Leo Mercado, USMC (Ret.) "It is a transition point in The Citadel's leadership development program as Fourth Class cadets assume their roles as leaders and mentors for the Class of 2014. The events associated with Recognition Day reinforce the concept of teamwork and overcoming adversity through physical challenges and the tenacity to succeed in the face of hardship."

Recognition Day concluded at 3:30 p.m. Saturday on Marion Square, site of the original Citadel campus, where the class will renewed the cadet oath. The march to Marion Square is intended as a reminder to the cadets of those who came before them and of the history they are now a part of as the Class of 2014.

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