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Heave! Ho! Then Off to Leave We Go!

(Choosing the Coast Guard Academy, The Cadet Experience, Class of 2015) Permanent link
Sherman Photo Third class summer part two – USCG Barque Eagle – is coming to a close. I’m sitting on the bus that is taking us to the airport in Halifax, Nova Scotia. While I am glad to be going home, I will miss being with my classmates and (new) friends with whom I have lived for the past five weeks on Eagle. Being on board this summer was much more fulfilling than my week during Swab Summer—I knew more about shipboard living and working, and we were required to know more about how Eagle works and thus be able to do more without direct supervision from an upper-class cadet or a crew member.

 

To give you a brief overview of our travels, we reported to Eagle in Baltimore, Maryland. After a day in port, we got underway, in route to Boston, Massachusetts. Because Eagle is a training ship for cadets, we take longer than normal to get to port. Therefore, we spent twelve days underway (an entire week of which we could not see land and were approximately 300 nautical miles off shore). After five days in Boston at the OpSail 2012 and 4th of July celebrations—not to mention a visit from my mom, aunt and cousin (resident of Boston) and a special parade with the U.S. Navy’s USS ConstitutionEagle set off for a short transit to New London, Connecticut, home port of Eagle. In New London, we observed a change of command ceremony and greeted our new commanding officer, Captain Pulver. While in New London, my dad had the opportunity to visit the ship, I had dinner with my sponsor parents, and visited the Teutons’ home for some rest and relaxation. We departed from New London and began an 11-day trip to Halifax, Nova Scotia (again taking the not-so-direct route). We arrived to Halifax and began preparations to depart from Eagle so that the swabs (Class of 2016) can begin their one-week cruises.

 

So, what did we do all those days out in the middle of the ocean? Standing watches and attending lessons, we gained operational experience aboard a Coast Guard vessel. We rotated through the five departments/sections on a cutter – operations, deck, engineering, damage control, and support. Our duties included acting as lookout, helm operator, and plotter (chart/map work) while in “Ops”; doing a round of compartments to detect fire or flooding and checking the proper functioning of onboard equipment and machinery while on engineering watch; attending damage control classes with hands-on practice; helping with the preparation and serving of meals and keeping the ship clean as a member of the support team; and trimming the sails, hauling on lines, and climbing the rigging while on deck.

 

Heave! Ho! Then Off to Leave We Go! (Continued) PDF Icon  

 



More about Justin.

 

End of the Year

(Academics, Choosing the Coast Guard Academy, Extracurricular Activities and Faith-Based Involvement, Class of 2015) Permanent link
Kekoa Photo If not for my Fundamentals of Navigation class, I would surely suffer as an officer in the Coast Guard. Luckily, my instructors have hours of meticulous work for my classmates and me. Due to the amount of plotting, charting, and graphing, my navigation homework has become a new hobby of mine. This class is great because I learn nautical knowledge, which directly applies to the fleet.

 

Anytime you can escape the crazy world of the Academy is a good time, and aside from exploring all that New London has to offer, my escape is boxing. From boxing, I have learned more about my limits and myself. I work to continuously expand them. This sport has brought many opportunities, including traveling to different states, meeting different people, and boxing in front of large crowds. Like boxing, sports at the Academy are a great way to release stress and raise morale and teamwork within the corps.

 

Walking in straight lines with rifles in long and black clothing sounds horrendous, but it is actually very rewarding. The sweat, tears, and aches of the corps' muscles are physical reminders of whom we are honoring. Despite the pain in your arms from holding your rifle, the nausea from being dehydrated, and the wet feeling in your black uniform, the best feeling is seeing the small honorees from across the field as a bead of salty sweat races in your eye.

 



More about Kody.