LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- In this School Smarts report, Sterling Riggs reveals a high school program in Louisville that has won multiple national championships.

It's hard to miss the 19 championship banners hanging in Fern Creek's basketball gym.  "I would challenge another high school that has another national level activity that has won 15 consecutive national championships," said Retired Master Gunnery Sgt. Frank Herbert.

The banners that hang in the high school gym don't represent basketball championships or athletic achievement. The banners signify hard work and dedication by the school's Marine Corp Jr. ROTC program. 140 students participate in ROTC.  "They learn teamwork and also setting aside personal desires to achieve a common goal. These kids really understand what hard work is," said Herbert.

Two teams compete every year at the national level. One team is made up of young men, the other young women. Both teams give it everything they have in five different events including marching and inspection.

The man in charge of the drill team, Retired Master Gunnery Sergeant Frank Herbert talked about what it takes to be the best in the country.

 "I'm watching to see if all of their hands are exactly the same. I want to see if they can stop in a straight line to see if I can draw an imaginary line behind their heels. Everything has to be the same, whatever it is," said Herbert.

Sophomore Rebecca Ortiz said the program is about much more than winning and losing.

"ROTC has taught me a lot about my life.  It taught me that I could handle a lot more than I thought I could. It also taught me about time management," said Ortiz.

Now if you think this stuff is easy, you might want to think again. I gave it a try and dropped my rifle. My debut ended in push-ups.

For more information on Fern Creek's Junior ROTC program, CLICK HERE.

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