LEXINGTON, Va. – Final preparations are underway for Vice President Mike Pence to visit VMI in Lexington on Thursday.
VMI’s post was buzzing on Wednesday with tents going up and roads shutting down ahead of Pence speaking to the school’s cadets.
“With 60% of our cadets commissioning into the Armed Forces, it’s something that’s really kind of cool,” said Bill Wyatt, director of communication and marketing for VMI.
VMI has been working with Pence’s office for about a year now to pull off this visit and the school specifically requested he speaks about international affairs and defense issues.
“We’re excited to hear what he has to say and pass on his wisdom to our cadets,” said Wyatt.
At about 1:30 p.m., Pence is set to land in Marine 2 on parade grounds, right at the heart of VMI.
Although other dignitaries have made similar entrances in the past, Wyatt said that this isn’t something you see at every college.
Alongside Pence will be Secretary of the Army and VMI grad Ryan McCarthy.
“He’s somebody who’s served in multiple administrations and has a lot to share with our cadets and who understands what our cadets are going through,” said Wyatt.
Most of VMI’S 1,700 cadets are expected to attend the socially-distanced event, but the event is closed to the public.
“It’s an important opportunity for our cadets in their leadership development to hear from these leaders, to understand what it takes to get to where they are,” said Wyatt.
Pence is expected to start speaking to cadets around 2 p.m. WSLS will livestream his speech on wsls.com and the WSLS 10 Facebook page.