Though graduation is still several weeks away, some students already have marched across the big stage.
The military's top brass recognized nearly 400 Junior Reserve Officer Training Corp or ROTC students across Oahu Wednesday
"It's a military tradition of inspecting the troops. Normally the commander will inspect the troops before they come into combat. We hope those kids don't have to do that any time soon," said Brigadier Gen. Janice Haigler.
Instead of going to battle these students will march into the next chapter of their lives.
The award ceremony is a culmination of what the students have learned over the last four years: discipline, responsibility and good citizenship. These are all attributes which prepare them for the life after high school.
"I'm currently planning to attend Woolrich University because of their ROTC program," said Mervin DeJesus of the Kaimuki JROTC.
"For me, ROTC is like another family. It's like a second family where you learn a lot of things that prepare you for the future," said Farrington JROTC member Marena Enita.
The military also recognized the top cadet in each of the high school's ROTCs. For the leaders of the JROTC's seeing these students is symbolic of their growth over the four years.
"As you can see I'm emotional. For me to see these kids out here is just very emotional; to see what they do in the school year," said Antoinette Correia, a junior ROTC program manager. "Some of them come not knowing about the program. Some of them come not even ready to enter the 9th grade – they're in trouble. In the four years, it's amazing to see what happens to them in the program."
According to the program director, about 98 percent of the students who join junior ROTC end up graduating from high school. Of those students about 20 percent end up enlisting in the military.