Sam Gulland ’10
Sam Gulland ’10

Army officer, in charge of a platoon that will deploy to Afghanistan in late spring. ROTC at Princeton, commissioned as a second lieutenant in the infantry. Princeton major: Woodrow Wilson School. 

What he does: In late January, after about a year in officer training at Fort Benning, Ga., Gulland started leading a platoon of 33 soldiers. His platoon spent a month this winter in “intensive pre-deployment training” at the National Training Center at Fort Irwin, Calif. As platoon leader, he is responsible for ­“everything the platoon does or fails to do” and works with the senior enlisted men “to make sure that we’re prepared.” 

Challenges: Gulland has been on active duty since January 2011 and never has been deployed overseas, yet he outranks everyone in his platoon. “Those guys know a lot more about basic soldier skills than I do.” The toughest thing, he says, is “walk[ing] the line between taking charge ... but also showing respect for the experience that these guys have.”

His motive: “I wanted to give something back,” says Gulland.