I passed Boards!!! Now I know to most people this means nothing but to a freshman at the Coast Guard Academy, it marks one of the most important feats of your first year here. Boards is an indoctrination test, we are handed a 50-page packet and told to study. When it comes time to actually take the test it is administered by a senior as an oral exam and you are asked to answer 10 questions pulled from anywhere in the packet. The information consists of Coast Guard ranks, rates, history, nautical flags, damage control, Coast Guard heroes, cutter and aircrafts and a million other things. In order to pass you must answer eight of the ten questions correctly. So what’s the big deal? When everyone in the class passes then we get to act like normal people finally! No more silly freshman traditions. We get Facebook back, no more bracing up, and we actually get to talk to our friends while transiting the halls of the barracks. For the freshman here at the Academy several hours goes into studying for this test and though a few of us have passed, our mission is to now help our shipmates pass as well.
With Boards over with for me my next big milestone is spring break! Just about a week away and I can’t believe how fast the time has gone by. It will be nice to go home to see my family in Texas and get away from this less than perfect New London weather. It’s crazy to think that I reported into the Academy eight months ago. I can’t begin to explain how much I have changed over this time and how much I have learned about myself. The best part about it all is that I still have so much more to learn. So I guess I’m on to my next challenge, even though I have just crossed one big hurdle, I have a feeling that this place might just have another one to throw at me.
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