Army ROTC was established in the New Orleans Area at Tulane University and Loyola University in 1947. Initially, Tulane University was activated to produce officers for the Army Transportation Corps, while Loyola University was detailed to train and commission officers for the Military Police. Both programs were established and remained independent of each other until 1978.
After the enrollment declines of the sixties and seventies had passed, the decision was made in 1978 to expand Army ROTC to include students from several of the local public and private universities. Under the leadership of Colonel Kenneth L. Wenn, Army ROTC was offered to students attending the University of New Orleans, Dillard University, Southern University at New Orleans, and Xavier University. At that time, separate headquarters at Loyola and Tulane merged into one Army ROTC Headquarters. Only one Professor of Military Science, located at Loyola University, was assigned to the New Orleans area. The Consortium concept was born, and the New Orleans Area Consortium was recognized as the New Orleans Area Instructor Group (NOAIG).
With the deactivation of the New Orleans Area Instructor Group (NOAIG) came three separate Host Universities. The headquarters at Loyola divided up the personnel assets, but retained control over the consolidated Supply Room and Arms Room operation. The University of New Orleans, Tulane University and Loyola University were, for a short period, independent Host institutions. Tulane University exercised a cross-enrollment agreement with Xavier University. The University of New Orleans had an extension-center agreement with Dillard University and a cross-enrollment agreement with Southern University at New Orleans. Loyola University had no extension centers or cross-enrolled universities.
Due to historical low enrollment and production figures at the University of New Orleans and Loyola University, both universities fell prey to the ever-tightening Army budget and by June 1986 it was official that only one Host University would operate in the New Orleans area. Based on its solid production rate, Tulane University assumed the role of the New Orleans area's sole ROTC Host institution in 1987, when Loyola University's request for co-host status with Tulane was denied. Loyola University, The University of New Orleans, Southern University at New Orleans, Dillard University, Our Lady of Holy Cross College, LSU Medical Center and Xavier.
The unit crest, worn by all cadets and cadre in the Orleans Battalion, symbolizes the unique tradition, history and character of the Orleans Battalion.
SWORDS. The swords symbolize exceptional prowess in military skills.
FLEUR DE LIS. The Fleur de Lis was adopted as the emblem of France in the 12th Century and became the emblem of the Kings of France in the 14th Century. The French Fleur de Lis was first flown over the Mississippi River Valley in 1682 when the explorer La Salle claimed the Mississippi as French territory. The three Fleurs de Lis grouped in a triangle form represent the birth and infancy of the City of New Orleans under French rule. Historically, they were the official devices of French Royalty.
CRESCENT. The crescent is the symbol for the City of New Orleans, which is called the Crescent City because of the shape the Mississippi River takes when it flows through the city.
COLOR. The color White is the symbol of purity of government, from which alone justice and equality can flow. The color Blue symbolizes liberty and the color Crimson is the fraternity – one blood and union. The combination of these three fundamental principles of good government – purity, liberty, and fraternity – constitutes DEMOCRACY. Red, White and Blue are the colors of the United States, as well as the colors of France, and since New Orleans is the daughter of both, they are grouped together on this crest.
NAME. The Orleans Battalion derives its name from the combination of cadets from eight universities within the City of New Orleans.
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