Embry-Riddle ROTC Leader Named USAA’s Instructor of the Year
Gunnery Sgt. Felix Arroyo Robles, the senior enlisted Marine staff member on Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s Naval Reserve Officers Training Corp (NROTC), was recently named the 2023 NROTC Assistant Marine Officer Instructor of the Year by USAA. Recognizing noncommissioned officers for their persistence and steadfast dedication to their units, this honor is awarded to only one military leader who is selected from an initial pool of nominees hailing from 63 different NROTC units nationwide.
Gunnery Sgt. Felix Arroyo Robles teaches and mentors hundreds of students in Embry-Riddle’s Naval Reserve Officers Training Corp (NROTC). (Photo: Gabriel Sweeney)
“Gunny Arroyo is an outstanding Marine and motivated professional who serves as an ideal role model to the Midshipmen Battalion,” said Capt. Carlos Medina, professor of Naval Science and commanding officer of the Embry-Riddle NROTC Unit. “His ability to lead, teach and mentor hundreds of students in their pursuit of a commission as a Navy or Marine Corps Officer has yielded immense success worthy of this national recognition. He has played a significant role in molding this unit into one of the strongest in the nation, and his tireless efforts will have a lasting impact on the unit for years to come.”
Before being named the national winner, Arroyo Robles earned USAA’s Southeast regional title, marking his second consecutive selection as a regional winner. In addition to his top performance as part of Embry-Riddle’s NROTC unit, Arroyo Robles was further recognized for his academic achievements; he also obtained a Master of Business Administration degree from American Intercontinental University last year.
“Awards and accolades are awesome, but the success stories of those I lead means more to me, especially when it is impacting a greater purpose in life,” Arroyo Robles said. “I believe that the sole purpose of me being here is to look out for the welfare of the ones who these officers in the program will lead, mentor and inspire. The only reason I can continue in this program is because we have rockstar students and they want to become better leaders — and they will be.”
Throughout the year, Arroyo Robles functioned as his team’s acting supply technician during a period of staffing transition, and he served as instructor of the Leadership and Management course, which is traditionally taught by the unit’s executive officer. He also modeled physical fitness by participating in multiple ultra-marathons and helping students plan their own fitness journeys.
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