Deverell receives $220,000 ROTC scholarship

Madelyn Comstock, Staff Writer

Matthew Deverell (12) marches in the Poway Parade, Sept. 11th. Deverell has been in NJROTC since freshman year. (Caitlynn Hauw)

Ever since he first heard about the national Navy ROTC scholarship in freshman year, Matthew Deverell (12) has worked towards achieving it to cover his college tuition.
“I’ve always wanted to pave my own path and not have to rely on my parents for tuition,” Deverell said. “I also don’t have to worry about taking out student loans now.”
Deverell’s commitment to the ROTC program hasn’t wavered since he first joined. He is now a commanding officer and in charge of an entire unit, responsible for managing the unit’s overall functioning. Outside of school, Deverell is an Eagle Scout with five years of experience in Boy Scouts. He leads activities and events, including campouts, and training younger scouts in his troop. Both of these leadership positions have helped him earn his scholarship.
“Holding these positions allowed me to experiment as a leader and gain more experience,” Deverell said. “I had to write essays about my leadership experience and why I fit what the Navy was looking for. “
On top of this, there were other aspects of the application he needed to complete, such as a fitness test, medical qualification and an interview with a commanding officer. He said the hardest part of the process was the medical paperwork.
“You basically can’t have anything wrong with you,” Deverell said. “You have to record [injury or illness] in the last few years, stuff like that. There’s just so much paperwork.”
After being awarded the scholarship, Deverell said he still had reservations. A challenging aspect is actually being able to use the money. Deverell was required to apply and be accepted into a school before he was able to apply for his scholarship.
“I knew I wouldn’t be able to apply the scholarship if I didn’t get into the schools I applied for,” Deverell said. “There was also just the stress that comes with having to make such a big decision.”
Deverell will attend Rice University, and is using his scholarship to cover his tuition, the total amounting to around $220,000.
“I called my parents, talked to the ROTC instructors, got all my friends, that kind of thing,” Deverell said. “[I was] excited because it’s all my tuition and that’s a lot of money.”
The scholarship also mandates that he join the Navy after graduating. According to Deverell, he has big plans for after high school.
“I plan to double-major in chemical and electrical engineering,” Deverell said. “[I want] to go into nuclear propulsion and work on submarines for the Navy.”