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CADET BLOGS

cadet blogs

Time Has Gotten Away

(Academics, Extracurricular Activities and Faith-Based Involvement, Class of 2017) Permanent link
Daniels Photo Hello All,

I find myself with only four weeks left in my first year here at the Academy, and even though I am happy to be moving on, it seems a little strange that the time has passed so quickly. It seems like yesterday that I was experiencing Swab Summer, running around and yelling answers at my cadre’s questions. For me, the past few months have been very busy – between the multitude of band events and concerts combined with classes and military obligations – and time seems to have gotten away from me.

 

Last weekend, the cadet jazz group, made up of me and six other cadets and Bandmaster Ian Frenkel, travelled to the Marriott in Mystic to perform for a Coast Guard Auxiliary function. This was an awesome opportunity to meet some of the Auxiliary, and talk to them about what they do. We played for about 40 minutes preceding their awards ceremony, and they were extremely appreciative of our time, and it was a great experience for me. If you come to the academy, and find yourself wanting to get involved more, I highly suggest the music programs. They get you involved in both Academy and non-Academy functions, and you will make a great group of friends.

 

With so little time left until the end of classes, the workload is growing, but I am able to manage my time better and get everything out of the way so I can enjoy my free time. That’s what I’ve found the Academy to be more about than anything else, learning to manage your time so you have opportunity to do everything with time left to relax and unwind at the end of the day.

 

My summer assignment this year is to an 87-foot patrol boat, the Coast Guard Cutter Seahawk out of Panama City, Florida! I couldn’t be more excited to be going there, and I expect to get a lot of work toward my qualifications done this summer. These summers spent out in the fleet really help give a better perspective on the “real” Coast Guard, and I can’t wait for this chance to get out there.

 

Until next time.

 

More about Drew.

 

Sailing in 30 Degree Weather

(Athletics, The Cadet Experience, Class of 2017) Permanent link
Kuntz Photo For the first time in my life, I didn’t make the twenty-two hour road trip from home to our house in Florida for Spring Break, instead spent it up north in Maryland with the sailing team for spring training. I was kind of bummed not to be going somewhere warm or with my friends who went to places like Cancun or Puerto Rico, but all in all it was an experience that I wouldn’t trade for anything.

 

Back home, I only sailed from late May until around September when soccer season started, and Lake Erie freezes in the winter which makes dinghy sailing hard (although we have some awesome friends who do ice sailing, it’s not really my thing). Anyway, I’ve never had to deal with dry suits or sailing in 30 degree weather! I can say it definitely has not been my favorite, and I am counting down the days until the weather gets warm enough where the ice isn’t forming on the boom…

 

We sailed out of St. Mary’s College and practiced on the water almost every day. It was really cool to be with everyone and be away from the Academy. I really got close with some of the people on the team, especially some of the other 4/c who I didn’t really get a chance to get to know that well in the fall! Coming back was way easier than some of my friends here who had to leave the warm beach to come back to Connecticut. At least we were in the cold, miserable weather the whole time so it wasn’t as much of a shock. Life’s all about perspective!

 

More about Savannah.

 

From Lazy to Productive in 2.3 Seconds

(Academics, Class of 2016) Permanent link
Doctolero Photo Coming back wasn’t as dreadful as I expected. Do not get me wrong, I love going on break. I went to Charleston, Jacksonville and Miami. I did a little of everything. And I LOVE Christmas. This year I must have been a good girl this year because Santa brought me everything I wanted, including an iPad. As the school year started I was excited to hit the books again. I can only take so much laziness; it was time for me to start being productive again. This semester I have more classes that pertain to my major, which means math all day. I can’t wait.

 

I’m also in a new division. I’m in the PFE retake division. That means that we take care of all the people that fail or can’t take the PFE. They basically just keep testing until they do pass. Hopefully there aren’t too many people. Taking the PFE once a semester sucks, I can only imagine taking it 3 or 4 times.

 

I’m hoping that this semester is better than the last. Not because my grades where bad or anything, they were actually really good, but there’s always room for improvement. I’m staying motivated this semester and I’m going to make improvements.

 

More about Rheanastasia.

 

April and the Living’s…Relatively Hard

(Academics, Athletics, Overcoming Challenges, Class of 2015) Permanent link
Krakower Photo I feel terrible that I haven’t been able to post in so long, but to put it lightly, my workload has been absolutely insane as of late. Papers are flying in everywhere, nautical charts need to be prepped, tests and quizzes are being taken, and presentations are being given. On top of that, so much more has been added to the ever-increasing workload that a cadet will entertain here.

 

On an extremely happy note, I am pleased to say that I got accepted to the Jewish Institute for National Student Affairs (JINSA) Military Program over my firstie (!!!!!!!!) summer, meaning that I get to go to Israel for three weeks and work with the Israeli Defense Forces as well as learn of the history and culture of Israel and its relationship with Palestine. I’ve always wanted to go to Israel due to my deep interest in the subject matter and its potential for leadership and military knowledge. That’s going to be an incredible three weeks.

 

For the other 8/9 weeks of my summer, I will be aboard the USCGC Seahawk out of Panama City, Florida. It is an 87-foot patrol boat, with an entirely enlisted crew. To say I’m not nervous would be a lie, as this will be the first time I’m onboard a REAL coast guard cutter (Sorry Eagle, but you’re not!) and I plan on getting some serious knowledge and leadership experience in. On a fun note, one of my swabs and now-4/c in my company will be coming with me, so that will be quite a good time switching from the role of a 2/c to 4/c relationship into the role of a 1/c to 3/c one. Nevertheless, it should be a great time.

 

Lacrosse has struggled a bit as of late. We’re 1-3 on the season, and after starting out ranked 6th in the nation, we moved down to 21st. Such is life. We have a game on Wednesday against Southern Connecticut State, so hopefully all will go according to plan and we can continue our winning ways.

 

Well, that’s about all I have time for, as a presentation on the Myth of Sisyphus is calling my name. Not really, but I have to do it anyway.

 

More about Sam.

 

One Coin Worth More than a Paycheck

(Overcoming Challenges, The Cadet Experience, Class of 2016) Permanent link
Kukich Photo While the paycheck at the Academy is an incentive to some, it turns out that some of the “coins” cadets receive aren’t produced by the U.S. Treasury. Many civilians ask me how I spend my paycheck – to be brief it’s broken up in the following way. 1) The Basic Life Requirements: Haircuts for gents, laundry, wardroom meals, along with a number of other expenses are automatically taken out of biweekly paychecks. 2) The Academy Necessities: This includes all of the uniform issues and formal tickets that test our etiquette skills and ability to keep it classy. 3) The College Wish List: Every wish can’t be fulfilled with our paycheck, but we are extremely lucky to balance the cost of textbooks, some sports equipment, travel home, and entertainment if we budget carefully.

 

Overall, that steady paycheck can help to make the Academy a rewarding experience. But even more gratifying are the experiences had here. One of my favorite opportunities so far has been participating in the color guard, specifically at the Major Cutters Commanding Officers Dining In event on base in February 2014. The yearly event is hosted at the Academy and in addition to all the major cutter CO’s who attend, the Commandant of the Coast Guard and many distinguished guests also come. It was very nerve-racking to present the colors in front of so much gold, knowing in the back of my mind they very well could be the ones to write my evaluations in a few years. The audience collectively had accomplished an unimaginable magnitude of good and at the end of the event Admiral Papp, Commandant of the Coast Guard, mentioned that my 3/c classmates and I would be the ones to take their place someday as future leaders of the service. In recognition of our small contribution at the event, he presented all nine of us on the line with his challenge coin – a highly regarded tradition in the service. On one side it reads his name, “Admiral Bob Papp” and Commandant, while the other reads “Shipmates Semper Paratus”.

 

Receiving Admiral Papp’s challenge coin didn’t add to my paycheck, nor did participating in that color guard event necessarily help my grade in Differential Equations, but in the long term that accomplishment is what sets the Academy apart. The idea that one coin can be worth more than a paycheck makes the nightly feeling of exhaustion just a little more satisfying.

 

More about Sarah.