The Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets Class of 2019 will complete the second leg of the Caldwell March on April 16 to commemorate the successful conclusion of their first year of training. This is the second half of the 26-mile march made in commemoration of Virginia Tech’s first cadet and student, Addison Caldwell’s journey to Virginia Tech in 1872.
The spring semester chain-of-command, the upper-class cadets who are leading the Corps of Cadets, will march with the first-year cadets to honor them as they complete their challenging year of training. During the fall semester, the Class of 2019, along with their cadre responsible for the initial phase of training, completed the first 13 miles of the march starting at the Caldwell homestead.
The march begins on Virginia 621, roughly a quarter-mile west of the Caldwell Fields area of the Jefferson National Forest, and will conclude on the Upper Quad of Virginia Tech.
To begin the march, the cadets will unload from the buses, form up, move into the wood line just off the road, and cross a creek. Once everyone is across they will then move directly south and straight up Brush Mountain. They will then move west approximately three miles along the service road on the top of the mountain until they come out in the Preston Forest subdivision.
They then proceed down Preston Forest Lane to Mount Tabor Road. The cadets halt for a break at the Slusser’s Church of God parking lot, after which they resume the march, moving through the Woodbine neighborhood before turning left on North Main Street. The cadets will turn left onto Giles Road and continue downtown until crossing at Turner Street and returning to the Upper Quad.
Upon returning to the Upper Quad, the regimental band, the Highty-Tighties, will play. Skipper, the Corps of Cadets cannon, will fire when the cadets first enter the quad, and on the first note of "Tech Triumph." There will be two shots total, the first at approximately 1:30 p.m. and the final shot will be at about 1:45 p.m.
Actual time depends on how long the march takes and is subject to weather and road conditions.
Everyone is welcome to come out and view the corps as it marches through town and to watch the ceremony on Upper Quad once the cadets return to campus.
Alumni and friends of the Virginia Tech Corps of Cadets support the cadets as they march by being a Caldwell March Sponsor. They donate $500 or more to sponsor a cadet, and the cadet wears a nametag recognizing their sponsor while they march. Afterwards, the nametag, a commemorative pin, and a photo of the cadet are sent to each sponsor. This year 168 cadets are sponsored for the spring Caldwell March, raising $126,631.