Reagan Senior Excels in Leadership
By Amy Morgan
Ronald Reagan High School senior Jack Connolly checks all the boxes. Academically, intellectually, socially and physically – he’s an excellent example of the future military officer he aspires to be. He’ll follow in the footsteps of his U.S. Air Force Colonel father as he plans to seek appointment to one of our nation’s military academies or earn a ROTC college scholarship.
In the meantime, Jack’s in charge of 32 cadets as Company Commander of Reagan’s Army JROTC. He also competes on the JROTC Air Rifle Team. Jack joined Boy Scouts as a Cub Scout at age six and now serves as a Junior Assistant Scout Master, mentoring others as they earn their Eagle Scout designation (which he completed at 15.) Jack actually finished the bulk of his Eagle project in Germany when his family was stationed at Ramstein Air Base.
He refurbished the neglected Flugtag Disaster Memorial on base that commemorated lives lost in an in-flight collision during the base’s annual air show. Jack and his team of volunteers power-washed the courtyard, trimmed overgrown trees, removed weeds, and sanded and painted the benches to renew the memorial’s honor.
He and his sisters, Katie (RHS class of 2022) and Elizabeth, also attended youth group on Ramstein. Jack so enjoyed his six years in Germany that he joined the German Club when he arrived at Reagan as a sophomore. He’s now the Public Affairs Officer.
Jack is interested in aerospace engineering and has taken most of Reagan’s science classes in preparation for a future military career on submarines or in aerospace. He noted the aerospace field in Boulder, Co., is one of the most highly accredited aerospace engineering programs in the nation. He also competes with the JROTC StellarXplorer Team of Cadets, which tasks students with projects such as how to keep satellites in space or orbit. While the STEM classes intrigue him, Jack’s favorite Reagan class has been AP U.S. History with Mr. Cummings. The teacher was in the ROTC program at Baylor University and eventually served in missile silos in the military.
“Mr. Cummings was really inspirational,” Jack said. “He values inquiry and will take time to talk with you on a personal level.”
Jack also participates on Reagan’s wrestling team. At 6’3”, he often competes in the heavy weight (221-285 pound) category, but sometimes slims down to the weight class beneath. Junior year he placed second in JV district in the 220-weight class and helped the team not only win, but also double the score of the second-place team.
This summer, Jack looks forward to participating in his troop’s return to Philmont – the ultimate Boy Scout camping experience. His favorite activity is the chance to shoot black powder rifles with live ammunition. He’ll improve his shot as he aims for the stars.