WHY USAFA?: "I chose the United States Air Force Academy because of my desire to be a successful person with foundation of knowledge, character, and integrity. USAFA will make me that kind of person as long as I put my best effort into everything I encounter here. I had several opportunities to go to school elsewhere, like the University of Michigan, Ohio State, and Navy. Ultimately, it came down to the Academy, because of the tight knit gymnastics team, coaching staff, full scholarship, and some of best academics in the country. Some other things that caught my attention are opportunities to fly, opportunities to travel, and the student-to-teacher ratio. Most important, is the magnitude that an Air Force Academy diploma has on the rest of my life, with jobs in the military, and especially in the civilian world."
HIGH SCHOOL/CLUB: Cedar Park High School...member of the National Honor Society...took eight AP classes...member of Key Club...competed at the club level for Acrotex Gymnastics...coached by Richie Valentour...five-time national qualifier...placed fifth on the parallel bars at HNI, competing at the elite level...earned several top-four finishes at HNI and at the Texas state championships.
PERSONAL: Full name is Thomas Jeffrey Wilkinson...nickname is Thom...son of Clark and Linda Bruderer...has one older sister, Kara (22), and one younger brother, Davis (15)...majoring in systems engineering management...future plans include becoming a pilot or attending business school and becoming a CEO in the civilian world...considers making it through basic training the greatest accomplishment at the Academy...lived in Oregon, Utah and Texas while growing up...hobbies include wakeboarding...favorite event is the parallel bars, because "I feel the most comfortable on that event"...member of Cadet Squadron 31.