FIT ROTC Panther Battalion conducts commissioning ceremony


Lt. Col. Jimmy Crook, left, a professor of military science at the Florida Institute of Technology, 2nd Lt. Alexia Pearah and Col. Steve Bond gather after MOAACC’s commissioning ceremony.

Viera Voice photo

The Florida Institute of Technology’s ROTC Panther Battalion commissioned the newest second lieutenant in the U.S. Army in ceremonies held Sept. 7 at Florida Tech's All Faiths Center.

Alexia N. Pearah took the oath of office with Florida Tech Panther Battalion cadets, cadre, family and friends in attendance. She was commissioned in the Army Medical Corps, and she will train to become a Medical Evacuation (MEDIVAC) pilot.

Pearah, a second lieutenant, graduated from Florida Tech with a degree in biomedical science. She has applied to medical school at the Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences.

Retired Col. Steve Bond, who is the second vice president of the Military Officers Association of America’s Cape Canaveral Chapter (MOAACC), presented Pearah with gold bars. It is the rank insignia of second lieutenant in the Army.

Pearah was welcomed to the Officers Corps on behalf of the Cape Canaveral Chapter and the 350,000 members of MOAA.

T.J. O’Conner was the guest speaker. He is a retired U.S. Army colonel and a former professor of military science at Florida Tech.

Pearah learned about the Florida Tech ROTC program while attending the school, and she received a 3½-year ROTC scholarship. She hopes to become a medical doctor and flight surgeon.

As part of her cadet training at Florida Tech, she interned at the Tripler Army Medical Center in Hawaii. During the summer, she returned to Hawaii to fly with Army medivac pilots.