CPT Anderson shares military advice during Veterans Day

Abby Yanacek, Writer

Teens are greatly impacted by their experiences in high school. Various career paths and opportunities arise during those crucial 4 years and choosing one can cause a lot of anxiety.

However, when the right path comes along, we cannot be afraid to take it.

That was the message Captain Cody Anderson gave to the students at Oshkosh North High School on Veterans Day.

For Anderson, joining the military was a life-changing event. In high school, he didn’t get the best grades. In fact, he had to do work past graduation to earn his diploma.

English teacher Michelle Carbinier remembers Anderson from his freshman year.

 “He admitted himself to being a little naughty here and there, but nothing too serious. He chose not to make excuses, accept it, move on, and improve,” says Carbiener.

Anderson’s behavoir seems to have been more toward the class clown side of behavioral issues rather than extreme behavior that prevents student learning.

“I just remember him being fun,” says Carbiener. “He was always a good sport.”

Anderson changed his direction when he signed up for the military.

“I realize military service is not for everyone,” says Anderson. “But for me, it gave me purpose and the discipline I needed to get my life on track.” 

CPT Anderson was born in Kaukauna and graduated from Oshkosh North High School in 2003. In September of the same year, he enlisted into the Active Army. He then joined the Wisconsin Army National Guard. In 2011 he graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh with a bachelor’s degree in Philosophy and the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence. 

Anderson credits his military career for preparing him for life after serving. 

“One thing the army does is they give you a bunch of different jobs. In fact, that is something I really appreciate about being an officer in the army because I don’t get bored.”

Some jobs might seem menial, such as cleaning the bunks, carrying ammunition, or doing other daily tasks. However, with more experience, people can earn more exciting positions in the army. 

“Artillery is my main job, that’s what’s called my branch. I deal with cannons and rocket launchers. That’s what I’m going to do for the core of my army career.”

To get to a higher position in the artillery, Anderson had to work hard and prove himself. He eventually became the gunner for his platoon. 

“The army is always about getting better and being able to manage more and more larger units,” Anderson said. “By diversifying what you do for a couple years at a time it puts you in a position to then be the commander at the next level when you’re responsible for leading that organization.”

Anderson advised students to look into a possible military career all while reiterating its not for everyone. However, he promised them one thing for certain.

“ROTC, the National Guard, and the Army will not quit on you.”