In his words
I graduated from the U. S. Coast Guard Academy in 1986 with B. S. degree in Marine Science. During my first class year, I had a very enjoyable and valuable experience with the Honors Program at CGA. Professor David A. McGill (a Fulbright Scholar and professor in the Marine Science Program) served as my advisor. Professor Jordan Pecile (a Fulbright Scholar and professor in the Humanities Program) taught and facilitated the honors class. In addition to helping cadets prepare scholarship applications, the class was very educational and beneficial. The reading and writing assignments broadened my thinking and skills, and the discussions were exceptional. I appreciated the small class size and personal attention given to each student by Professor Pecile.
Because of the support and encouragement provided by these professors, I applied for and was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to the United Kingdom. I attended the University of Southampton in England and completed an M.S. degree in oceanography. The academic program was rigorous, provided an opportunity to study under world-renown professors, and included classes and research for a thesis. The Fulbright experience involved more than just academic study. I enjoyed the trips and events associated with the program as well as living in a foreign country. I visited representatives of the British Coast Guard and gained valuable insight into this service.
The experience also proved to be valuable professionally. The oceanographic research project provided hands-on research and writing experience. The study of currents and drift rates was relevant to the Coast Guard interest in drift rates for search and rescue and for tracking icebergs. In fact, I applied this experience as an oceanographer at the International Ice Patrol where I conducted an oceanographic research patrol and wrote research reports.