Photo of marching regiment
The 10th Regiment Advanced Camp of ROTC Cadet Summer Training at Fort Knox, Kentucky. Photo by Amber Vincent.

Two ROTC nurse cadets from the WSU College of Nursing took top honors at Cadet Summer Training in Kentucky.

Koby Binks, BSN ’17, and Candace Madriaga, a junior in the nursing program, were both honored with the Norton Healthcare Award during different sessions of the summer training program. The Norton Award is given to the nurse cadet who best demonstrates the ability to perform under stress and to apply critical thinking skills when making decisions.

(Left) Cadet Koby Binks, an ROTC graduate of the WSU College of Nursing, receives the Norton Healthcare Award for nurse cadets at Cadet Summer Training. Photo by Mattie Cook. (Right) Candace Madriaga, an ROTC student at the WSU College of Nursing, was honored with the Norton Healthcare Award at Cadet Summer Training. Photo by Madison Thompson.


Both Binks and Madriaga entered the WSU College of Nursing from Eastern Washington University’s ROTC program. The College of Nursing reserves seats in each new class for Army ROTC nurses from WSU and EWU.

Binks said the lessons he learned at the WSU College of Nursing helped him help his platoon during the month-long summer training program at Fort Knox.

He told them, “Let’s talk about how important it is to change socks” as they went through training exercises in 95-degree heat with 100 percent humidity, he said. “I talked about the science of electrolytes, I talked about hydration and what that means to the body,” said Binks, 28.

After completing a nine-week Basic Officer Leadership Course, Binks hopes to work in Spokane and fulfill his military service through the Army Reserves.

Madriaga, 22, said she’s “97 percent certain” she’ll become active-duty military after she graduates from the College of Nursing.

“I want to care for those who are fighting for our country,” she said.

Some 8,200 cadets went through basic and advanced camp at Fort Knox this summer, events designed to help ROTC cadets improve their skills and leadership qualities.