Leading through service drives COSAM Graduation Marshal to new heights
“COSAM has been a life-changing experience for me, and I will always come back to the Plains just like my dad did when he brought me to football games when I was young,” said Lee Reagan.
As the Fall 2022 Graduation Marshal for the College of Sciences and Mathematics, or COSAM, Reagan has created his own path.
“I grew up as an Auburn fan and learned the Auburn fight song even before my ABCs,” he said. “I have always wanted to go to Auburn, and I have had incredible experiences at Auburn University.”
Originally from Trussville, Alabama, he graduates with his bachelor’s degree from Auburn University in biomedical sciences with minors in both global cultures and military science.
However, his college experience is a journey rich in service and giving back to the community.
After graduating with his high school diploma, Reagan went through three challenging months of basic training for the United States Army in Oklahoma. Then, he completed four months of medic training in San Antonio.
“I was in church one day, and an Auburn Alumnus mentioned to me that the university used to be known as the West Point of the South,” Reagan explained. “The Morrill Land-Grant Act began military training at Auburn and has led to providing the US military with over 8,000 officers.”
Shortly thereafter, he began his studies at Auburn and joined the university’s ROTC program.
“Being part of ROTC has given me the opportunity to travel to Kentucky, Alaska and Vermont,” he said. “I was able to shadow doctors in Alaska that could not access those who needed medical care in rural areas via roads, but through flying to remote locations to see their patients.”
Joining ROTC, gave him a chance to get involved in a student organization and to continue helping others. He competed in the challenging Sandhurst Military Skills Competition at the United States Military Academy in West Point, New York.
“Originally, I thought joining ROTC was just going to be a class and a lab,” he said.
That changed as he progressed with his college education.
“As you grow with ROTC, you learn how to guide and lead students, which helps not only develop your skills but makes an impression on future cadets,” Reagan added.
With all of his adventures, he also participated in a trip to Africa that left quite an impression on him.
Reagan then traveled more than 8,000 miles to East Africa to give back to others.
“My idea of resiliency what changed witnessing Kenyans in informal settlements living without access to healthcare, without any electricity and making use of what little resources they owned,” he said.
Reagan learned Swahili and plans on traveling back to East Africa for future missions as he enters medical school.
He also works as a patient care technician at the University of Alabama Birmingham.
“I get the chance to help both doctors and nurses in the Emergency Department,” he said.
The work gives him a chance to speak with medical professionals and learn all aspects of the hospital.
“Working in the hospital has been what solidified that medicine is my calling,” Reagan said. “I know that I want to be a medical doctor to help others and also keep a commitment in the Alabama National Guard so I can continue to give back to my state.”
Reagan also volunteered at the Esperanza House and the Warrior Research Center. In addition to the Army ROTC program, he was involved in Alpha Epsilon Delta, French club and intramural soccer.
“COSAM gives you the tools to do anything,” he said. “You focus on developing skills to adapt to an ever-changing world and I am excited to see where my journey takes me.”
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