Chatham, VA - Hargrave Military Academy hosted a highly decorated army commander for their Distinguished Speaker Series Tuesday.
Lieutenant General William Caldwell visited campus to share his military experiences with the cadets.
Caldwell is a Hargrave graduate who went on to the United States Military Academy at West Point.
He shared lessons he's learned over his military career, which spans almost 40 years. Caldwell also offered advice to cadets considering a future in the military, telling them that college should be a top priority even if you choose to serve.
Caldwell also stressed the importance of humility, which he said has kept him grounded as he rose through the ranks to become a three star general.
He is just one of two guests Hargrave has hosted this year as part of their Distinguished Speaker Series. The alumnus says he was honored by the invite.
"This is a real honor to come back and see the students, have a chance to walk around the classrooms. I interacted with the cadets last night in a social setting, so it's been great for me," Caldwell said.
"I watched their faces. They were all engaged, they were all listening to him. What we're going to want to continue to do is bring in distinguished speaker that engage our young men and engage our community, " said Hargrave President Don Broome.
Caldwell also served as Commander of the NATO Training Mission in Afghanistan. From 2009 to 2011, he trained Afghan military troops and police.
Caldwell says a lack of quality education and literacy put many of the young recruits at a disadvantage.
Through his leadership, 300,000 young men got a basic education and training.
Caldwell says the troops are closer to operating independently.
"It'll never be like the United States Army, nor do we want it to be. That's not what we're trying to build. What we're trying to build is that kind of force that is sufficient and necessary to what they need in Afghanistan, " Caldwell said.
He hopes the military training and education they've provided will help the people of Afghanistan move forward into a brighter future.