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A Day in the Life of Cadet Melina Peters '24

Far before the day’s formation to long after the flag is lowered, this cadet and scholar makes each of her “hundred hours” count.

Interview By Torie Noellsch
Cadet Melina Peters '24 with a saber Texas A&M University - Corps of Cadets


And I'm Up!

This early morning routine isn’t easy, but I wake up by diving into my Bible study. Afterward, I turn on some fast-paced music while I do my hair to mentally prepare for the training ahead.

Drawn image of Melina braiding her hair in the mirror.
Drawn image of Melina braiding her hair in the mirror.


A pre-sunrise salute.

I fall into formation on the Quad and am brought to life by cadets shouting “campusologies.” Those who fail this campus history test get a round of pushups in before standing at attention again. We salute the flag, and the Corps Commander releases us to our squadron commanding officer. I join Squadron 21 to begin our physical activity.


This McDunc is mine!

I’m on a new mission: get my hands on a McDunc—Duncan Dining Hall’s version of a McMuffin—before they run out. Breakfast sandwich victoriously in hand, I head for my usual serving line and am greeted by Ms. Elaine, who has served cadets like me for 40 years. The food doesn’t taste like my mom’s cooking, but this woman has a motherly way about her that makes me feel at home. Speaking of mothers, I put my pull-out name, “Quad Mom,” to good use during training chow as I drill freshman cadets on their day, current events or training improvements.

Drawn image of Melina holding her McDunc.
Drawn image of Melina holding her McDunc.


Nap? Yes, please.

Back to my dorm for a quick shower and re-bag (post-formation nap). An hour later, I pull my hair back in the second bun of the day.


Dressed for success.

I enter my first class in my Bravos and properly shined shoes. It’s time to focus on leadership and political science to earn my international studies degree through the Bush School of Government and Public Service. My next step: hopefully get accepted into its international affairs master’s program before enlisting in the Marines to attend Officer Candidates School.

Drawn image of Melina on A&M steps with her shiny boots.
Drawn image of Melina on A&M steps with her shiny boots.


Hold on to your Cholula!

I return to Duncan on the hunt for something new: a bottle of Cholula hot sauce to spice up my typical grilled chicken and veggies lunch. Like the McDuncs, Cholula is a hot commodity (pun intended) and disappears fast. I look forward to this part of the day, enjoying camaraderie with my buddies.

Drawn image of Melina hiding a bottle of Cholula behind her back.
Drawn image of Melina hiding a bottle of Cholula behind her back.


I am not a spy.

Time for my favorite and most challenging course of the day: Russian. Very few students pursue a minor in Russian like me, so I am instantly greeted by a small group I’ve learned with since I was a freshman.


Another wardrobe change.

Extracurriculars are starting, so it’s time for another wardrobe change. If today were Monday or Wednesday, I’d be heading to Ross Volunteers practice, but Thursday means I’m suiting up for Corps women’s soccer practice.


Game on, girls.

I join my fellow Corps women on the field, glad I listened to an epic movie soundtrack on my drive to Penberthy to relax my mind and prepare for the technical soccer drills and scrimmage ahead. We are fortunate to have a senior cadet volunteering as our coach, and we all respect her for the work and time she puts into the team to make sure we’re ready for our weekend matches.

A drawn image of a soccer game.
A drawn image of a soccer game.


Reporting for duty.

Reporting to the Susan and Michael J. Plank ’83 Leadership Learning Center as a student assistant, I hope for a quiet night to give me time to focus on my studies.

A drawn image of Melina reading a book.
A drawn image of Melina reading a book.


Signing off.

Exhausted but fulfilled, I walk across the eerily quiet Quad to my dorm where I plop down my backpack, brush my teeth, and change into my PT gear to get ready to roll out of bed and do it all again tomorrow.

Melina Peters, in uniform, giving a thumbs up to the camera.

Corps Scholarships

Melina is supported in her daily Corps activities, leadership training and education by the Class of ’51 Sul Ross Scholarship, Class of ’68 Sul Ross Scholarship, and the Cindy and Hubert Hillman ’75 Scholarship. Want to help more hardworking cadets like her live each day to their fullest by creating a Corps scholarship? Contact Essence Wylie ’15 below.

How You Can Help
  • Kelly Corcoran '95

  • Assistant Vice President of Development
  • Division of Student Affairs
  • Call: 979.314.9475

Make Your Impact

Support scholarships for members of the Corps of Cadets as they pursue academic and leadership excellence on the Quad.