The Citadel celebrates 25 years of women graduating from the South Carolina Corps of Cadets

On Friday, March 1, The Citadel kicked off a weekend full of celebrations recognizing 25 Years of Female Cadet Graduates.

The first event, a panel discussion held over lunch, took place on Friday in Bastin Hall. Each alumna who spoke during the panel discussion represented an academic school at The Citadel. Panelists included Toshika Cannon, ’02, Caroline McKaughan, ’09, Lauren Fleming-Melton, ’10, Amanda Rudnik, ’15, and Sarah Smith Humphries. ’22. The panelists spoke about their experiences as cadets and how The Citadel prepared them for their post-graduation lives.

“Sometimes in life, you’re put into situations where you’re going to have to have leadership qualities to make it through. Being here at The Citadel taught me how to stand on my own two feet and demand respect,” said Cannon. “You also have to have compassion and a support system. My support system came from my classmates, my family and my friends who became my sisters and brothers while I was here.”

While the rain canceled Friday’s parade, which was set to honor and recognize female cadet alumnae and their accomplishments, The Citadel was able to mark the occasion with a reception in the Daniel Library. Countless alumnae got the chance to catch up with their former classmates, speak to current cadets and browse photo collections from The Citadel Archives.

On both Friday and Saturday, Citadel alumnae shared short stories of their cadet experience with The Citadel Archives. If any cadet graduates were not able to attend in person, email archivist Tessa Updike at to schedule a Zoom recording later this spring.

The rain also affected Friday’s baseball game, but was rescheduled to Saturday, when Army Captain Sarah Zorn, ’19, threw out the first pitch of the game. Zorn was named regimental commander, the highest-ranking cadet officer in command of the Corps of Cadets, in 2018.

The weekend of celebrations concluded with a brunch held in Bastin Hall, where Zorn briefly spoke on her experience as the Regimental Commander and how The Citadel’s core values have driven her to where she is today. She was introduced by Board of Visitors member Col. Allison Dean Love, The Citadel Graduate College Class of 1993. A Q&A session followed, where both alumnae and current cadets got the chance to speak about their time at The Citadel and about how far the institution has come.

“This weekend has provided us a great opportunity to celebrate all of the accomplishments of women at The Citadel over the past 25 years. When I think about my Citadel experience, I like to remember all of the opportunities that The Citadel afforded me. There were opportunities to grow through challenges, to embrace change with tempo and to build a strong community of friendship that is strengthened even more now with our women alumnae network,” said Zorn.