Editor in Chief
Ten years after graduating, Josh Bourne (’04) came home last Saturday night. Many alumni congregated for the annual homecoming awards dinner, but for Josh it was more than a homecoming – it was a time to humbly accept the young alumni award.
The young alumni award is given to a graduate for recognition of professional excellence and outstanding service to the College, community, state, and/or nation.
“Just being nominated was exciting enough for me. Finding out that I was actually selected out of the final list was humbling to me,” Bourne said. “I still struggle with the fact that there are other people that deserve it.”
Bourne had always wanted to join the military, but it wasn’t until the tragic day of 9/11 that his thoughts turned into a reality. In 2002 Bourne enlisted into the Marines Corps. After graduating, Bourne served over seas in Iraq from 2005 to 2008 as a part of operation Iraqi freedom.
“It is a big transition. The Marine Corp prepares you well for what you are going to do and what you are going to see,” said Bourne. “The best thing form Springfield was understanding people. I was an officer with 77 Marines under my charge with very little experience. I was able to leverage some of my experience from Springfield and turn that into a positive thing and made sure I always took care of my people.
After Bourne’s grueling tour in Iraq, he was selected to work special operations for the Marines from 2007 to 2008. Many details of Bourne’s experiences cannot be included, but the experience as a whole was a revelation. Bourne got a chance to be on the other side of the playing field with some of the military’s top men.
“That was eye opening to see some of the behind the scenes stuff that we have to do to be successful across the world,” commented Bourne on his special operations duty. “Regular non special forces members are never exposed to this kind of stuff… it was very rewarding.”
Bourne has served in Iraq, led a platoon, and worked in special operations and he is still going. He now works in Africa rotating time from home with his wife, and two kids, to working security assistance and other various jobs overseas. The busy Marine also finds time to work with wounded veterans for an organization that uses outdoors activities and relaxation in a therapeutic way.
At Springfield College, there is never a shortage of those have given back, and continue to do so. They’re individuals who live the humanics philosophy, and hold onto their SC ideals closely.
“I always look back a Springfield as a stepping stone of something that helped me to be successful,” said Bourne.