Norwich University Commencement: Marine General to Speak at ROTC Commissioning Ceremony

Updated May 6, 2015

Norwich University Office of Communications 

NORTHFIELD, Vt. – Norwich University’s graduating future officers will hear remarks from a fellow alum at this spring’s joint services commissioning ceremony.  Brigadier General Raymond R. Descheneaux ’87, United States Marine Corps Reserve, Assistant Deputy Commandant for Aviation (Mobilization), returns to the Norwich campus to speak to ROTC commissioning officers during a formal ceremony to mark the occasion on Sunday, May 10 at 9 a.m.

Descheneaux will speak about the value of Norwich leadership in its unique setting, which embraces all four ROTC branches plus civilian students.

“The Norwich experience uniquely prepares future officers for joint, coalition, and inter-agency operations in the 21st century,” says Descheneaux.

Descheneaux is currently assigned to Headquarters Marine Corps in the Pentagon. He is responsible to the Deputy Commandant for Aviation and assists in procuring, employing, integrating, and sustaining current and future aviation capabilities throughout the Marine Corps.

A career aviator and KC-130 pilot, Descheneaux has served in a wide variety of leadership roles since his days on the “Hill” as a Norwich cadet.  He has served in each echelon of the Marine Corps from a squadron through the Marine Expeditionary Force.  A forward air controller with service at sea, Descheneaux has engaged in the full range of military options from assault support missions in Iraq through humanitarian relief operations in Somalia.  In addition, he has served in joint, combined, NATO and United Nation actions in the Middle East, Far East, Africa and in Europe.

Descheneaux received a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Norwich University, a master’s degree in business from Columbia College of Missouri, a master’s in strategic studies from the U.S. Air War College and is a graduate of the Joint Forces Staff College.  He has flown 319 combat missions while accumulating over 3,700 military flight hours.

Descheneaux is one of 23 Norwich alumni currently serving the nation as a general officer, admiral, or in the Senior Executive Service.

At the 10 May ceremony, Descheneaux will address approximately 110 students anticipated to commission into four branches of the military. The new officers receive their second lieutenant or ensign bars and their first salutes. The event, which begins at 9 a.m. in Shapiro Field House, is part of Commencement Weekend and is open to the public.

Here are anticipated commission numbers:

Army: 75
Air Force: 10
Navy: 18
Marine: 7

About Norwich University

Norwich University is a diversified academic institution that educates traditional-age students and adults in a Corps of Cadets and as civilians. Norwich offers a broad selection of traditional and distance-learning programs culminating in Baccalaureate and Graduate Degrees. Norwich University was founded in 1819 by Captain Alden Partridge of the U.S. Army and is the oldest private military college in the United States of America. Norwich is one of our nation’s six senior military colleges and the birthplace of the Reserve Officers’ Training Corps (ROTC).

In fulfillment of Norwich’s mission to train and educate today’s students to be tomorrow’s global leaders and captains of industry, the Forging the Future campaign is committed to creating the best possible learning environment through state-of-the-art academics and world-class facilities. Learn more about the campaign and how to participate in the “Year of Service” here:

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