I finished my first year of college at JMU poor and having gained the infamous freshman 15 (maybe 25). Having grown up in a military family, I turned to that route to pay for school and better myself by joining ROTC my Sophomore year. For the first two years, I battled with constantly feeling behind from my peers who have prepared for this since high school. I was shy, unsure, and full of doubt in if this was the right thing for me. Summer before senior year I had to participate in a month long training camp with other ROTC cadets from across the country. I was DREADING this training - it involved sleeping outside for two weeks, little sleep, and no access to my phone! Through the months of anxiety at the thought of this camp, I arrived and quickly realized I wasn’t as far behind as I thought. I was forced out if my comfort zone into leadership roles and saw myself come out of my shell, trust my instincts and actually do quite well. I left that month feeling so much more confident in my army career and my own abilities to persevere, trust myself and find the positive side of all situations. I went on to thrive in ROTC and follow on trainings, finally having the confidence to find my place. Even now, I find myself pulling in those skills to work through moments where I feel that imposter syndrome kick in. I remember confidence is key and pushing through a tough situation will bring me strength in my own abilities.