To say that Jason and Will Powell have shared a similar Colorado State University experience is an understatement. In fact, the identical twin brothers have shared almost everything for the past 23 years. And they wouldn’t have it any other way.
The Powell brothers, from Austin, Texas, will both graduate with degrees in Biomedical Sciences from the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and commission as 2nd Lieutenants in the United States Army this month. The outstanding Army ROTC cadets and scholars believe their built-in support system – and a healthy dose of sibling rivalry – has helped them both survive and thrive at CSU.
“We push each other in everything we do,” said Will. “It makes you work harder in our classes and with ROTC because at the end of the day either you get to brag, or you have to listen to him brag.”
“We push each other in everything. It makes you work harder in our classes and with ROTC because at the end of the day either you get to brag, or you have to listen to him brag.”
— Will Powell
Jason, who pointed out that he was born two minutes before Will, agrees that their lifelong bond has always been a positive influence on both of them. “It’s always a competition, but I know that he will always help me, and I will always help him,” he said. “I know that if I don’t win, Jason will, and I want to see him succeed.”
Lt. Col. Troy Thomas, professor of military science in the CSU Army ROTC program, said the Powell brothers will leave a void in the program that will be difficult to fill. In addition to completing rigorous courses in biomedical sciences, they both participated in the ROTC Ranger Challenge, football push-up crew, and the annual Boot Run to Wyoming. Will was the officer in charge of the Ranger Challenge team and was the battalion sergeant major. Jason was the officer in charge of the push-up crew and head of the Trainer Mentor Program.
“They were at the top of their class in everything they did from the very beginning and they always had each other’s back. I give a lot of credit to their parents. They had a great upbringing,” said Thomas.
For the first time in their lives, their paths will soon diverge as Will heads to medical school and then into the Army as a physician. Jason reports to the chemical corps in the 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, in January, and hopes to eventually attend medical school. Both brothers aspire to work as ER or trauma doctors, but plan to keep their military options open.
Jason and Will agree that CSU, the biomedical sciences program, and Army ROTC were the perfect fit for both of them. “I can honestly say that I wouldn’t change anything,” said Will, as Jason quickly added, “I can’t conceive of what I would be doing if I hadn’t come to CSU.”
Thomas is looking forward to the next chapter of Jason and Will’s journey.
“Thirty years from now we may have the future surgeon general of the Army and a two-star general,” he said. “The sky is the limit for the Powell brothers.”