People love us. Seriously.
Really though...do you see how long this page is?
“I am a retired Platoon Sergeant from the Army (22 years) and also retired as a Veterans Supervisor from the NC Dept of Commerce. I think both careers were a reflection on my two years at Oak Ridge and the values I took away from there after graduating in 1967. I developed lifelong friendships with many of my classmates and we still try to stay in touch as much as possible. The two years I spent there were some of the best years of my life and would not hesitate to recommend Oak Ridge to any prospective Cadet.”
-Henry (alumnus), February 2022
“Taught me values and morals that I use everyday”
-Stephen (alumnus), February 2022
“When I was a Cadet at ORMA, it taught me how to be a leader and help teach those around me. I am now Lieutenant at my Volunteer Ambulance Corps and a Field Training Officer at my main job at an Ambulance Company.”
-Edna, (alumnus), February 2022
“Oak Ridge taught me the self discipline to succeed in life.”
-Adam (alumnus), February 2022
“Oak Ridge is a place for the student to learn responsibility, team work and respect . A highly recommended academy for a superior education.”
-Raymer (alumnus), February 2022
“I learned structure, boundaries, respect, manners, and received the BEST education in this country. I couldn’t love that place more for making me who I am!”
-April (alumna), February 2022
“If every child spent at least one year at Oak Ridge Military Academy, it would be life-changing.
ORMA taught me too many things to count; however, two character traits stick out: integrity and the desire to never quit. It's these two traits that allowed me to become a Citadel Graduate, Army Officer, Airborne Ranger, and Practicing Lawyer. ORMA provided me with the academic foundation and military discipline to accomplish my goals.”
-Bryan (alumnus), January 2022
“ORMA is life changing when it is most important. Could not be where I am today had I not been a cadet.”
-Eddie (alumnus), January 2022
“Before I enrolled at Oak Ridge I was a year and a half behind in high school. It did not seem like I was going to graduate. After I enrolled at Oak Ridge I was able to catch up academically and graduate on time! I then went on to graduate from a four year university and then law school.”
-James (alumnus), January 2022
“Great High School Education. Without Oak Ridge, I would have never graduated from NC State in Aero Engineering in 1960. Also led to commission in USAF and opportunity to become a fighter pilot for several years.
Once out of the Air Force, enjoyed a 35 year career in Aerospace Engineering in Propulsion on many Air Force systems including the C-5, AQM-91, F-15, B-1, F-16, YF-17, A-10 and B-2.
Oak Ridge faculty and teachers provided me with a great educational foundation that got me through Engineering School at NC State. I would have never made it through Mechanical Engineering (Aeronautical Option) without the excellent math courses at ORMI. The math part of my education also included College Trigonometry, which I was allowed to take as a High School Senior since I was on the Dean's list.”
-Jesse (alumnus), January 2022
“Oak Ridge not only provided me with a very good education in preparation for furthering my education, but the small class sizes and personal relationships with teachers as mentors provided me with the confidence I needed to be become a leader and assert myself throughout my life. I am proud of things I have accomplished and credit so many of my successes to the educational foundation and relationships with peers and teachers that I had during my formative years at Oak Ridge in 9th-12th grades.”
-Ruth (alumna), January 2022
“Even though I only attended for a year of my life, I learned discipline, how to take care of myself, working as a team, accountability for my actions and service to community to name a few things. I went to ORMA with Dale Earnhardt Jr….what an amazing experience. Because of ORMA I sought out a career in law enforcement and I am a police detective. Great Academy! I would Highly Recommend ORMA to prospective parents/students.”
-Austin (alumnus), January 2022
“ORMA has made the biggest impact on my life. From dealing with highly complex real life situations to exceeding in business. I always reach back to my time at the Ridge and I draw inspiration.”
-Franklin (alumnus), January 2022
“ORMA is legacy in my family. My great grandfather attended (before it became a military school), as well as my great, great uncles, way back in the 1870’s. My cousin also attended, and additionally, my brother graduated after me. The pipes are certainly old, and the dining hall has not been featured on “Diners, Drive-In's and Dives.” But Oak Ridge provides a sound college-prep education, coupled with a student-led leadership development program. If you are looking to develop character in your son or daughter, and prepare your child for college and life, Oak Ridge might be the right choice.”
-Sam (alumnus), January 2022
“Going to Oak Ridge Military Academy gave me the foundation for the life I have now. I own two businesses and I am a Paramedic for the 911 system and work as an Actress in Film and Television. I have been very successful and enjoy my life. ORMA taught me to respect myself and others and to appreciate the life I am given. It made me understand that nothing is given to me and that to have anything in life you had to work hard for it, appreciate it, respect it and take care of it. I made friendships their that have lasted for over thirty years. It has given me morals and standards which I use in my life and business in every aspect. I would not be the person I am today if it were not for ORMA. I am beyond grateful for the time I spent there. It is one of the greatest gifts my mother ever gave to me. Although at the time I did not understand it or appreciate it, looking back I am thankful for it. I owe her and ORMA everything because without it I could have gone down a very different path.”
-Angela (alumna), January 2022
“Although I was anything but happy when I first visited ORMA and learned that I would be enrolled, I now look back with the knowledge that it was a learning experience and what I needed at that time in my life. I was an angry young lady with a troubled home life, an alcoholic and abusive mother, and had recently lost my father to cancer. My grades were suffering and I had lost focus and felt quite upset with the world and everyone in it.
The decision to attend ORMA was not mine, but in retrospect, it was the best thing for me. Being away from home and living with my peers created a sense of responsibility and teamwork. It allowed me to breathe. I met people from many different backgrounds and learned that mine was not the only perspective. I also had some fabulous teachers and coursework and I learned how to shine my brass and shoes and earn those merits!
I cannot say that it was my choice to attend ORMA, but I can say that I am grateful for my experiences in the short time that I attended. Every experience there taught me something. I wish I had stayed on until graduation but I made the decision to return home and live with my grandparents.
If I could speak to the younger me today, I would have told myself to stay at ORMA and continue the friendships that I started there. If I could speak to a young person that perhaps is facing a similar situation today, I would say this: ORMA is what you make of it. What you learn there can change the course of your life. This is an opportunity to be more, and the sky is the limit.”
-Tracy (alumna), January 2022
“I would not be the man I am today without ORMA. It was everything to me!”
-Giusseppe (alumnus), January 2022
“This place saved my life.”
-Ty (alumnus), January 2022
“I am proud to have graduated from Oak Ridge Military Academy. The faculty, staff, and my classmates taught me a lot.”
-Eric (alumnus), August 2021
“ORMA has helped me find my true inner self and not only helped me push myself, but also push and guide others in the right direction. It has impacted my life greatly and I am grateful for going to ORMA”
-Parrish (alumnus), July 2021
“This school was instrumental in my successful career in the military and federal law enforcement. The discipline, camaraderie, and structure was exactly what I needed as a young man. I highly recommend this school for students from all walks of life. While at ORMA, I made relationships which have lasted a lifetime.”
-Bret (alumnus), June 2021
“Being at Oak Ridge has taught me a lot about learning to be myself. I feel as though this school represents the core values of a successful leader in the real world. I have accomplished all of my set goal and more due to the hardworking staff and culture of this school. I am about to embark on this journey through life and I am happily prepared by ORMA to face any obstacle that I encounter. I highly recommend joining any of the offered clubs at this academy as they provide a great add-on to the educational experience while making the environment fun and enjoyable.”
-Harvey (alumnus), June 2021
“As a first year teacher, working at ORMA has been a privilege. I have gotten to come to work every day to a job that I enjoy, and a faculty that I can say are like a family. This job has taught me so many things about myself and about the profession of teaching. Things like classroom management and workload have so much less of a constant weight here because of the way ORMA runs as an institution. I have skills and teaching strategies that I know will further me as an educator that I may not have had thanks to this school. I have had the ability to make bonds with students that I may have not otherwise with the small class sizes and the programs in place to connect students and teachers. I know that ORMA is a hard place for me to leave. Having the help and care of the dean and other faculty and staff really made it feel like home.”
-Marie (faculty), May 2021
“I am a retired public school teacher and I’ve been teaching middle school math, Algebra 1 and 2 for two years. ORMA is a great place to teach. There is no one looking over your shoulder to make sure that you are following a pacing guide. Teachers are encouraged to be rigorous in instruction but have the freedom to teach at a pace that best supports student learning. Class sizes are small, my smallest is 6 and largest is 14. This helps make classroom management easy, along with the cadet leadership structure and TAC staff. The beautiful setting and supportive staff help make ORMA a great place to teach.”
-Tim (faculty), May 2021
“My time at ORMA has taught me true leadership. It’s taught me how to accomplish goals as a team while building up each member of a team. It has taught me how to, and given me the place to mentor and tutor younger children at a time that might be difficult for them, while still keeping the standards of excellence in all we do. It has built me into a person capable of leading others through difficult experiences through positivity and perseverance.”
-William (alumnus), May 2021
“The moment I arrived at ORMA back in 2018 you could take one look at me and notice by the way that I carried myself that I was shy and timid, I could not look you in the eyes because I was afraid of talking and putting myself out there. But after attending ORMA there was a noticeable change in me, when I talked I would look you in the eyes, no longer afraid, I learned to carry myself with pride.
Before I came to ORMA I thought that the experiences I would have at ORMA would change me into a different person, a better person. But now that I’ve graduated I know better, ORMA’s goal isn’t to change you, it’s to build you into the person you were always meant to be and because of that ORMA means the world to me because I’ve found myself and instead of trying to impose false ideas of myself I’ve found true happiness. love myself. It’s rare nowadays to find someone who truly loves themself because society has made us question who we are as people, there’s a common belief that you need to be “perfect” and to be “perfect” you need to stop being yourself, you need to forget everything that makes you, you. But part of what makes a person is all of their faults.
Being at ORMA has taught me a lot of valuable lessons but that one has to be the most important because just like most fourteen-year-old girls I thought that I needed to be perfect and my idea of perfection was someone without faults but now that I’m older I can tell you that to be the person I am today I have made many mistakes, and instead of crying about it, I own it.”
-Reyna (alumnus), May 2021
“Oak Ridge Military Academy is home. This school has given me so much over the past three years, including having a second family. It’s been wonderful.”
-Ethan (alumnus), May 2021
"I just want you to know what a difference ORMA has made for our child. I do not think it would be exaggerating to say that ORMA saved my child's life! Thank you for being a place where kids can not only get a great education, but a place where they can learn to take pride in the little things that then lead to big things. You truly look at the whole child, and that means so much!"
-Rachel (parent), April 2021
“We have really seen a big change in our son after enrolling him at Oak Ridge Military Academy. The school is exactly his speed as far as academics and the 1:1 instruction he's able to get from his teachers. We went from D's and F's in public school to A's and B's at ORMA. We also went from "I don’t care about school" to "my GPA is so important." The discipline and routine has really made him thrive and he really enjoys the dorm life with his friends. He is a 7 day boarder and it's rare that he requests to come home because he likes being at ORMA. Our family was lost and really felt like our son was going down a bad path in life and ORMA has given us hope. He really is a different kid and I am so grateful we found such an amazing school for our son. I would highly recommend ORMA to any parent looking for an alternative to traditional school.”
-Lindsay (parent), February 2021
“I absolutely recommend Oak Ridge. The leadership at ORMA is outstanding. We Love this place.
What a great future we are giving to our son.”
-Sonya (parent), February 2021
"Our son has had a wonderful experience at ORMA."
-Rebecca (parent), February 2021
“ORMA taught me to be a very independent woman. It gave me friends for life and an excellent education.”
-Stephanie (alumnus), January 2021
“Oak Ridge helped me in more ways than I can express in words. I wish I could do it again!”
-Will (alumnus), January 2021
“I am so excited for my son. This is his first year at ORMA! He is new in seventh grade. Thank you so much!”
-Michelle (parent), January 2021
“My boys (age 12) were not happy campers in the beginning weeks. They said "Forgive us for how we've been, we'll be better!" and "Please come get us!" As they caught on to expectations and began recognizing responsibility, they are much happier.
I AM SO HAPPY WITH THE CHANGES I SEE!
It takes some patience, but it's worth it. My boys are greater than grand, and I pray they will be outstanding young men....I see much progress toward that goal.”
-Mary (parent), January 2021
“I have a 16 year old daughter who started this year. I just want to encourage you guys a little bit...I would wager that by the time your kiddos get to take leave for the first time, they will be excited to return back to ORMA. My daughter absolutely loves it there and calls it home now, not school. The staff have been so good to her and treat the cadets as their own.”
-Kristi (parent), January 2021
“Our daughter just started ORMA in October, and by November (and especially over Christmas break) we saw a much more mature, happier, and more goal-oriented person! It has made a huge impact in a very short amount of time for her and we couldn’t be more proud!”
-Elizabeth (parent), January 2021
“No better feeling than your child thanking you for giving them the opportunity to go somewhere they can thrive. Public schools and distance learning have not helped our children. I’m so glad our daughter has a place like ORMA which she calls her 'home away from home.'“
-John (parent), January 2021
“Our son is excited to go back and has changed so much and his grades are outstanding. What a change. We are blessed to be able to send him. The best thing we've ever done and money well spent. We hope to keep him involved every year. It has been a very positive impact on our son. We are so proud of him. I am sure all of them will shine like super stars.”
-Sonya (parent), January 2021
“Our daughter was definitely upset with us at first, but after the first week she loved it!! My husband asked her if, given the opportunity, she would go back to public school...and she said "NO!!!" I know we made the right choice. Our daughter was actually ready to go back to school after break, and now my 10 year old son can’t wait to attend.”
-Casie (parent), January 2021
“I am beyond grateful for the positive impact ORMA has on my son. Thank you.”
-Mollie (parent), January 2021
“Our child is enjoying where he is at and we made the right decision to move him to ORMA. When COVID hit last year he was not happy with the remote learning environment. He did not have the interaction he was expecting from his instructors at public school. When he came home this past Friday, he was a bit down knowing the campus was going to remote for the next few weeks. I believe his spirit lifted a little bit over the past few days when he saw the remote learning is nothing like what he experienced last spring. He can hardly wait to get back on campus.”
-Patricia (parent), January 2021
-Monica (parent), December 2020
“I came to this school thinking it would suck and that I’d just hate it, but I love it. I love the new people I've met and have become friends with, and I definitely have memories with them, and cannot wait for many more. I love y'all. thank you to the people at Oak Ridge!”
-Whitney (student), November 2020
“Great military academy! I am so proud to have attended even for the one year I did many years ago. I would recommend this Academy to any parent who is having any issues with their child.”
-Austin (alumnus), November 2020
“Small class sizes and teachers who showed an interest in my education and my personal growth were a huge influence for my life. Keep up the good work. ORMA has so much to offer.”
-Ruth (alumnus) October, 2020
“Amazing School! Amazing Staff! One of the best choices I have made for my son.”
-Keith (parent), September 2020
“Oak Ridge Military Academy is a fantastic school! A rigorous curriculum and leadership skill combine to provide an outstanding education.”
-Tamara (faculty), September 2020
“To me, Oak Ridge Military Academy is an academy with almost a magical feel. The Faculty, Staff, and Administration are the best that you will ever find. It focuses on the personal development of each cadet that steps foot on campus. It certainly changed my life and molded me into the man that I am today. It did the same for my brother, as well. I could not recommend Oak Ridge Military Academy enough!”
-Nathan (alumnus), September 2020
“My gratitude to Oak Ridge Military Academy is unimaginable. I’ve been given amazing opportunities here. I feel like I’m needed, and I feel like I have a family. I have brothers and sisters that I can count on and trust. ‘Thank you!’ to my fellow students, the faculty, and the staff for all they’ve done to make ORMA what it is.”
-Devon (student), August 2020
"Oak Ridge Military Academy is a special place where leaders are made and cultivated. The staff does an outstanding job in bringing out the best in the Cadets. Academics are second to none, the Athletics teams are highly competitive and the Military components are top notch!"
-Bobby (parent), August 2020
“Oak Ridge Military Academy is an amazing school where students can count on the strong support of the exceptional faculty and staff to excel.”
-Olalekan (faculty), August 2020
“My son was a junior at the local high school last year and failing nearly every class, mostly because he had given up on himself as had his teachers. He is a smart kid but was focused more on having fun and had no focus on the future. I felt he needed to repeat all of his junior year, but there are no options within the school system or at most private schools in the area that would allow him to repeat a grade. ORMA was my last hope as I honestly felt my son would either drop out of school or not be eligible to graduate if he remained in public school. Thanks to Major Forde and others at the school, ORMA allowed him to repeat the end of 10th grade and now he is repeating 11th. He has thrived at the school! He now wants to go to college and he has become one of the leaders on campus. ORMA has been worth every penny! I truly believe ORMA has saved my son’s life in so many ways and I look forward to what the future brings for him.”
-Kim (parent), August 2020
“When I picked up our son, I could see the change in his confidence. He overcame some fears and gained some respect and some new friends. This is a fantastic school!!! Thanks to everyone who helped.”
-Ann (parent), August 2020
“My year at ORMA was a major turning point in my life, after a lackluster public school career. At ORMA, I learned discipline and good study habits, as well as the value of being an active part of a Whole and working as a team member with others to accomplish a common mission. Although I did not leave ORMA as a graduate with diploma in hand, my year there richly prepared me for further studies leading to three graduate and undergraduate diplomas and a full career of State and National Service. I am immensely proud to be a member of that Long Grey Line of ORMA Cadets!!”
-Richard (alumnus), August 2020
“I am so incredibly proud of my son. We are forever grateful to Oak Ridge Military Academy. Parents from all over the world trust them to keep their kids safe, while teaching skills and values that will last a lifetime.”
-Jamey (parent), July 2020
“I’ve had the pleasure of getting to know a lot of Cadets over the years, and I’ve never met an ORMA Cadet that didn’t become stronger physically, intellectually, and emotionally. Your child will be a better man/woman for this experience. Fine young men and women come from those historic halls.”
-Mike (friend), July 2020
“My son graduated from Oak Ridge Military Academy, and it is a fantastic school! To this day, he says it was the best thing that ever happened to him.”
-Elena (parent), July 2020
“I've worked for ORMA for almost 12 years, and it is a special place that takes cadets wherever they are, and helps them reach their goals and potential. Our graduates go far and lead their communities and peers well.”
-Caroline (faculty), June 2020
“In just one year, ORMA took in a lost young man and helped make me the man I am today. I love and cherish that school; it made me a better person. Even in such small amount of time, it gave me so much.”
-George (alumnus), May 2020
"Oak Ridge Military Academy is an outstanding institution! The strength of the military and academic programs is useful in helping cadets reach their goals."
-Dale (alumnus), May 2020
“Thank you to Oak Ridge Military Academy for helping my two boys complete high school!”
-Katie (parent), March 2020
“Being at ORMA has shown me that leaders must be guided by specific values. This school has shown me how to pursue my future, including my career and other life decisions. My only regret is that I wish I had taken more advantage of my first year or two at Oak Ridge. I’m excited to graduate, and to leave a legacy behind me for the next generation of leaders. I know the support of the teachers, administration, and commandant will continue to develop young people into better citizens, just as they have done for me!”
-Simon (student), February 2020
“I was hesitant about coming to ORMA, but after meeting the wonderful teachers that have drastically improved my academic abilities, I’m so happy I came. My relationships with all the teachers, coaches, and staff have helped me to grow so much in my two years at Oak Ridge. I am excited to see what the next two years hold for me! I would definitely recommend that parents send their child to Oak Ridge Military Academy if they want to see improvements in their abilities all around.”
-Will (student), January 2020
“Oak Ridge Military Academy is an outstanding institution! The strength of the military and academic programs is useful in helping cadets reach their goals, and I love to see the direction it’s heading. Oak Ridge was a wonderful foundation for my future.”
-Dale (alumnus), January 2020
“My 3 years at Oak Ridge shaped my entire life for the better. The self-discipline and perseverance were invaluable.”
-David (alumnus) 2020
“ORMA taught me discipline, and also helped me learn English as a second language.”
-Walter (alumnus) 2020
“In a time in life where I was craving consistency and boundaries without knowing it, ORMA provided those things for me.”
-Lucy (alumnus), 2020
“I accomplished so much at ORMA and it set the bar for my adult life. I miss it so much!”
-Bethani (alumnus) December, 2019
“Going to Oak Ridge was the best thing my parents have ever allowed me to do. I owe my professional success to all of the TACs, teachers and administrators from my time at ORMA, a place that will always hold a special place in my heart.”
-Phil (alumnus), November 2019
“Oak Ridge Military Academy made me into the strong person I am. They taught me the importance of conviction and honor.”
-Leanna (alumnus), November 2019
“We’ve seen a tremendous difference in our son at home. ORMA has made a huge difference in his life! He has a renewed purpose, and it’s wonderful to see him excited about school again. He’s certainly come a long way from a year ago and we couldn’t be more proud. His Grandmother mentioned recently that the twinkle in his eyes is back. Thank you to the ORMA staff for making such a difference in our son’s life, we can’t thank you enough!”
-Kristy (parent), October 2019
“One of the best gifts Steve and I gave our daughter was sending her to Oak Ridge. She experienced life in a way most people will never experience it and she is so much stronger for that. She learned about respecting authority, respecting others, and more importantly respecting herself.”
-Sarah (parent), August 2019
“I was fortunate to attend ORMA. It was a remarkable academic and military experience that strongly helped shape my life, career, and major leadership roles since my graduation…Not a day goes by that I don’t have a thought about ORMA and the life-long values of duty, honor, commitment, knowledge, and leadership that are the foundations of the Academy. Oak Ridge is a very special place.”
-William (alumnus), August 2019
“Sending our son to Oak Ridge Military Academy has been the best decision we could have made for his future and our family. We sent an angry and sometimes violent boy to ORMA. Our home was not a happy one and we were at our wit’s end as to what to do with our son. He was definitely headed down the wrong road as evidenced by his numerous encounters with the police. When our son returned home for the summer after his first year, we were so excited to witness the positive changes. He is polite, respects authority, joins in on family fun, and speaks about his desire to attend college. It has been worth every penny we have spent and continue to spend to have our son back on track.”
-Cindy (parent), July 2019
“The teachers at Oak Ridge are fabulous, and they truly made a huge difference in my son’s Freshman year. Until then, he had not been challenged from an academic standpoint, and I will admit that we were worried about him keeping up with the curriculum when he started. He is now looking forward to the challenge of Sophomore year, and we owe all of that to his teachers and their patience. Thank you so much for everything!”
-Susan (parent), July 2019
“ORMA has changed my son’s life and trajectory beyond measure. He has always been a sweet kid, but lacked confidence, accountability, and direction. Concerned about his future, I reached out to ORMA to help instill the structure and discipline that I could not provide on my own. What I have witnessed in just one year has far exceeded my hopes. The staff at ORMA are an extended family who deeply care about the cadets. Now a JROTC officer, a strong student, and confident leader among peers, it blows my mind that my son can’t wait to get back to school in August. The changes in him brought about by ORMA bring tears of pride, joy, and gratitude to my eyes quite often. I literally thank God for ORMA. This school is priceless and a great asset to the community.”
-Sandra (parent), June 2019
“Coming to ORMA has helped me become more confident, strong and proud. It has truly changed my life. Supportive teachers, military instructors and coaches have all helped me realize my capabilities and achieve things I never imagined I could do.”
-Corey (student), June 2019
“Oak Ridge Military Academy has done great things for our daughter and our family in just a few short months. Their outstanding teachers have caught her up academically. The military lifestyle has taught her self-discipline and respect. She loves the relaxing free time and beautiful setting. What a wonderful school!!!”
Maria (parent), February 2018
“As a relatively new member of the Oak Ridge faculty, it's truly an honor to work at such a historic institution. Each morning, as my wife and I walk into work, we smile, look at one another, and say, "I can't believe we get to work here." The campus itself is so impressive, there are so many caring faculty/staff members, and the cadets have truly captured our hearts. These cadets have the potential to do so many great things, and I hope that they'll look back on their time here as a precious and sacred time. Oak Ridge Military Academy is a special place, and it is my hope that the cadets, the community, and the country will "rise up and call her blessed" for producing leaders of such character.”
-Rex (faculty), October 2017
“The teachers were great, worked with each student, and actually cared about the students. It gave me the skills I needed not only in the military but in business as well. If you’re tired of the public schools not caring, teachers who just want a paycheck, and your child not learning: Oak Ridge Military Academy should be your choice to further your child’s education and their growth into adulthood.”
“Oak Ridge provides a sound college-prep education, coupled with a student-led leadership development program. If you are looking to develop character in your son or daughter, and prepare your child for college and life, Oak Ridge might be the right choice.”
“I love it. I am currently attending and the classes are small, which allows more one on one help with the teachers. The classes are great -- I feel like I am truly being prepared for college.”
“I attended Oak Ridge Military Academy from 1981-1984; Seventh, Eighth, and Ninth grade. I lived in Whitaker dorm for one year (7th grade) and Armfield dorm for one year (9th grade). During my eighth grade year I lived in a room, next to the boiler/coal room in the Campus Infirmary (reason below). I was on "Gold Star Drill Team", I was an "A" student, and on Honor Roll and Dean's list all three years. This was the best education I ever received as a youth and I'm truly sorry that I left prior to graduating. I had a signed scholarship from President Crabb, school president at the time, for the Air force Academy in Colorado Springs upon graduation. But, I was young and, against my mothers wisdom, I left for public school. That decision holds the title for "my biggest regret ever" in my life. I'll never forget Oak Ridge Military Academy and am currently looking into sending my two oldest sons. Premium Education if you have the tuition funds required. I was personally on an "in-house" scholarship program at the time because my mother was single and a school teacher. I worked in the cafeteria my first year and lived in the infirmary my second year helping the school nurse. This is how my mother was able to afford my tuition. Wish I could go back to this time in my life. I would've done things a lot differently, specifically, I would've never left…”
“Oak Ridge Military Academy is a great school. Our drive for continual improvement is reflected in the lives of the young men and women who attend our 7th thru 12th grade College Preparatory program. Great schools have an academic focus for their curriculum. For some it is science and technology, while others focus on the arts or classical education. We offer a competitive college-prep curriculum that is focused on leadership. We prepare young leaders to be people of high character, sound knowledge, and a drive to have a positive influence on others. They learn and practice leadership to prepare them to thrive in college and life. Using project based educational models and universal designed learning styles, we have successfully educated young leaders from around the world for 163 years. Check us out to see if you fit the uniform of an Oak Ridge Military Academy Cadet!”
“I am a proud graduate of ORMA, class of 1993. Two decades after I left Oak Ridge, I can see even more clearly just what a strong and positive influence the school and my experience there was on my life. It gave me not only a strong foundation in leadership but changed who I was and how I viewed myself, transforming a very shy, skinny, redheaded kid who rarely spoke up in a crowd into a confident, self-assured young man who was willing to take on any challenge. Without a doubt sending me there was the best decision my parents ever made regarding my education.
Looking back as I went on after I left ORMA, I was always ahead of my peers thanks to the experience there. In college I was confident enough to speak up, challenge authority when needed, and take on tougher courses as well as resist negative influences that could have derailed not only my studies but my life. I joined the Army Reserve right after school and was much more prepared for the challenges than my peers, and my ORMA experience helped me over my career for the next 20 years.
As a small business owner now, the lessons of hard work, personal responsibility and living a life of integrity have helped guide me. The lessons of leadership I learned there, having to be that cadet leader who had to motivate and direct younger cadets, take responsibility for their success and failure, and resolve disputes between cadets from a wide and diverse background gave me a strong foundation for now serving as the leader of my company and managing my employees.”
"A Cadet will not lie, cheat or steal, nor tolerate those who do" is the honor code there, and what I have found is that living my life by that same ethos since has served me well in all aspects of my personal and private life.”
“Great school with great tradition. Good curriculum and strong background for college. If I had not gone to Oak Ridge with good teachers in math and sciences, I would have never made it through NC State to become an Aero Engineer.”
“ORMA was a big help to us. Our daughter’s attitude has improved tremendously. She is more respectful and is much nicer to be around. Enclosed is a gift for the academy in appreciation for the care and attention that was given our daughter. Oak Ridge’s mission and philosophy did prepare her for college and life. She will always remember the school as 'home' and the faculty and staff as 'family.'"
-Evelyn and Ron
“We thank you so much for being such a significant, positive force in our son's life this year! You taught him so much through your words and your ways. We will always remember what you did for him. Please accept this gift as a token of our appreciation. No words or gift could fully acknowledge our regard for you.”
-Nick, Jan, and Rachel
“Our daughter started attending ORMA last February. In the short time she’s been at the Academy, her demeanor and confidence has improved tremendously. As parents, we are so grateful for the strong and encouraging environment ORMA provides. Please extend our thanks and gratitude to the entire ORMA staff.”
-Dave and Ann
“ORMA did our son a world of good with an obvious boost to his self confidence. Many people have commented on how self assured he is and how comfortable he is conversing with adults. The structure and discipline at Oak Ridge produced a better product than what we had seen. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him back at Oak Ridge. I personally think that would be a good thing.”
“I will continue to recommend ORMA just as I have in the past as I think it is a great school. Feel free to have any parents of prospective students call me if they wish to talk to a parent about ORMA. Thank you.”
“I just wanted to write you a short email to let you know how wonderful your staff and faculty have been. They have all been so encouraging to our children. Our sons are really enjoying the year so far and are so proud to be attending ORMA. It has been a different experience for them both, and it could not have gone better. We are looking forward to a great school year. We feel we made a good choice in enrolling them.”
-Lother and Anita
“It has been six months since my son arrived at Oak Ridge. We had been struggling in the public school system with apathetic teachers, students that were constant behavior issues, and a kid enjoying the freedom of not having to be responsible for himself and his actions. Needless to say, it was a recipe for disaster. After receiving mid-semester grades in January that reflected 20% of his work not turned in and plummeting grades, as a result, we decided to send him to Oak Ridge. I guess I would say we were fortunate to have had two very positive summer experiences there so the transition was a little smoother for him than others.
The first two weeks he was there I was a wreck, filled with self-doubt and worrying how they were treating “my baby.” He hated being a recruit and struggled with his lowly status and the overwhelming list of memorization. However, with every day that passed, I saw a change in him. He became more confident. He started passing his recruit training and could see the light at the end of the tunnel. The day he became a cadet was thrilling for him and for me. He had done it all on his own. Usually I was the one picking up the lost pieces and pushing him through to finish whatever the task was at hand.
Oak Ridge has allowed me to let him be responsible for himself and his fate, whether that be good or bad. I think it was as hard on me to break that cord as it was on him, but thank goodness it was done before we got into a perpetual cycle of me always rescuing him.
I guess my point in all this is to thank you for giving our son and us such a wonderful gift: the ability to trust in himself and to accomplish goals on his own. As we were leaving school yesterday after 8th grade graduation, I looked over and said, “Isn’t it great that school is out, and it’s the beginning of summer?” He responded that yes, it was, but that he was going to miss coming here every morning, because it was the first time in his life that he actually looked forward to getting to school. Amen!
We will look forward to August and the start of a new school year.”
“Attached is a thank you note for that absolutely phenomenal Mother’s Day Celebration. Please share it with your staff and faculty.
Also, if I can ever do anything to help the academy, please let me know. If I was wealthy, I’d love to build a new dorm for the girls or do something outstanding to show you just how much I appreciate everything that has been done for my daughter. She is the dearest thing in the world to me, but I’m so glad that I entrusted her to ORMA. It has been a wonderful experience for her. If you ever need me to talk to other moms who are thinking about sending their children there or to write a glowing letter for you, please let me know. I heartily endorse ORMA and recommend your school frequently to parents. Unfortunately, most parents can’t let go and do what is best for their child. It’s not easy, but I wish my son had gone to school at Oak Ridge, too. I can see where it would have been beneficial to him.”
“We noticed a big change in our son in just 2 short weeks at ORMA. He stands taller, is more respectful of authority, and shows genuine concern for others. He was very polite, and we were very proud to be with him. We really feel that ORMA is going to be a great turning point in his life.”
“I noticed a great change in our son's attitude and behavior over this past Easter break. Thank you.”
“The school is doing a great job, and I want to voice my appreciation especially to you for having an open door policy and hearing my concerns. You’ve not only heard my concerns, you’ve addressed them and made changes accordingly. This is why my son attends ORMA and will do so until graduation.
Keep up the good work and again, thank you.”
“It is with great happiness that we routinely receive from our son numerous reports of his positive attitude and success in your summer program. His phone calls have indicated that he is indeed happy at ORMA.
Most of all, I want to thank you and the entire ORMA staff for the support and encouragement you have shown my son this summer. It is clear from the very tone in his voice that his confidence has been boosted. This was our number one goal in sending him to your school for the summer.
I wanted to extend my compliments to you as the commandant. Your efforts and duty are way and beyond the call of duty. Your job is the most difficult in the academy. I think your wisdom is unsurpassed as to the cadets and their psychological potential reality in this difficult world. Please forward this message to the new president. If you don’t, I will.”
“Oak Ridge is not only a learning institution; it is a place where the faculty puts forth an effort to be there for their students. They stand in, at times, as a “temporary” family to help ease being away from home. Yes, they can be harsh when needed, but I believe that that is needed to help prepare our children today for the world they will face tomorrow. Oak Ridge is also a place to grow, emotionally as well as academically. The possibilities for these cadets are endless if they just give them a chance.
The true meaning of what Oak Ridge stands for is a dying dream in America today. To teach our children well, both mentally and academically. To teach them that we go nowhere in this world alone. But rather, if we work as a team, a well-trained unit, that we can achieve our life’s goals of a better tomorrow through a safer and friendlier today. If we take the great knowledge and wisdom that have been bestowed upon us during our time at “The Ridge,” that we can do anything.
Not only did ORMA leave an everlasting mark on my son's heart, but also mine and my husband’s. We came to think of ourselves as almost like a part of the ORMA family. And I want to personally thank you for giving me at least one year to be a large part of my son’s school year. It’s the only time that has ever happened. It will always bring a tear to my eye to think about all the times on campus with all the cadets. I can still close my eyes and hear the “bugle” calling the cadets to their places, while we wait on him, I can hear the wind in “the oaks” and the “magnolias.” I can hear the clanging of the metal from the flag pole as the wind billows the stars and stripes out as it waits to be retired for the night. Seeing the cadets have a perfect formation, all dressed up and standing proud, hearing the band in the distance as it marches from alumni to the parade field.
Before I close this long rambling letter, I just want to thank you from the depth of my soul and being for the wonderful times you have etched in the memories of not only my son, but in ours as well.
God bless you also so much, and I hope you continue for many years to continue shaping the lives of our youth… God knows they need the help.”
My gratitude to Oak Ridge Military Academy is unimaginable. I feel like
I have a family. I have brothers and sisters that I can count on and trust.