West Point cadet visits Oxford alma mater

OXFORD – A year and a half after graduation, Craig “Alex” Champlin had the chance to return to his alma mater, Oxford Academy, for the first time Tuesday. This was no casual visit, however. The 6’6” 19-year old came dressed in the signature cadet gray uniform worn at West Point for close to 200 years, and prepared to talk about his experience so far at the United States Military Academy.

“I’m not here to recruit,” said Champlin, who is the son of James and Maryann Champlin of Oxford.

The 2009 Oxford graduate is now close to mid-way through his second, or “yuck,” year at West Point. As a member of the Cadet Public Relations Council, he is invited to speak to students about the military academy. This week, he visited high schools in Marathon, Cortland and Norwich. He said he saved the best, Oxford, for last.

“I still love it with all of my heart,” he told the students who gathered to hear him speak. Early on in his presentation he outlined his objectives for the talk – to communicate where West Point is located, and what it is. He also shared many of his own experiences, including daily life at the academy and meeting the challenges of the West Point’s rigorous academic, physical and military standards.

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