Student to Compete for Best Warrior Title

Sep 09, 2019

First-year student Jordan Amrhein will compete Sept. 12-15 in a contest to find the best Army Reserve soldier.


Cal U first-year student Jordan Amrhein will endure constant mental and physical challenges for four straight days — with hopes of doing it again.

A private first class in the U.S. Army Reserve and ROTC student, Amrhein will begin his quest for the title of Best Warrior at a competition at Niagara Falls, N.Y., Sept. 12-15.

The annual competition is a preliminary event used by major Army Reserve commands to select the best junior enlisted soldier and noncommissioned officer in their ranks. The winners will represent their units at the 18th annual United States Army Reserve Command Best Warrior Competition Oct. 6-11 at Fort A.P. Hill, Va. 

Amrhein, of Bentleyville, Pa., will compete in a variety of challenges including firing weapons, a ruck march, formal interviews, warfare simulations, land navigation, the Army Physical Fitness Test, written exams, and various “mystery events.” 

He is part of the 393rd Medical Company out of Coraopolis, Pa., and was nominated to represent the 99th Battalion by 1st Sgt. Brian Hogan.

“I’m excited but also pretty nervous because I really don’t know what I’m getting into,” said Amrhein, who enlisted in the Army in April 2018 while still a student at South Park High School. “I will just try and do my best.” 

The demanding event is designed for a solider to be effective both on the battlefield but also in the boardroom. Visibly fit, Amrhein is confident in his shooting ability but believes the formal interviews will be challenging. Also, the unknown events could cause anxious moments. 

“Each of us will sit in a room with many high-ranking officers who can ask you anything about Army regulations or the Army itself, and there’s a lot of Army regulations pages we have to read and know,” he explained. “Knowing the way things are, they will try to trip us up during the competitions, but that’s all part of it and we have to be ready for anything.” 

Amrhein is majoring in computer engineering technology. His goal is to be commissioned as a second lieutenant when he graduates and then go to Ranger School and Special Operations before active duty. 

“Growing up I’ve always wanted to be in the military, and I did not even know about the Best Warrior competition until I was notified I was nominated,” he said. “But I also really enjoy working with computers and my academics here can only help me in my military career and will always be something I have in the future.” 

Lynne Langley, of the Department of Math, Computer Science and Information Systems, is impressed from her initial interactions with Amrhein in her Introduction to Algebra course. 

“Normally I would never comment on a student I just met so early in a semester, but Jordan is really head and tails above the rest,” she said. “He shows so much respect, I would recommend him for anything he wants to do, and thank him for his service because it’s the military that allows us to be able to do what we do.”