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cadet blogs

The Inaugural Parade: An Exceptional Experience

(The Cadet Experience, Class of 2018) Permanent link
Kimura Photo I, along with 90 other cadets from the Academy, had the opportunity to travel to Washington, D.C. and march in the presidential inauguration ceremony. After we pulled into the Naval Academy Thursday morning, we had the chance to go to the pre-inauguration concert accompanied by amazing fireworks behind Lincoln Memorial.


On Friday, we had to bring out our rifles and bayonets to march in the parade.


Participating in the inauguration events was an exceptional experience. One of the other cadets there said it was one of the best moments in his life because he was so close to Secret Service members, his dream job. For me, the best part of going down to D.C. was seeing Admiral Rendon and his wife glowing with pride and waving at us as we marched by the President’s box.


I was also lucky to be able to meet up with friends from prep school, who attend the other service academies. A friend from USAFA was staying at the Naval Academy to march, and he was hosted by our other prep school friend who attends the USNA. It was reunion no one expected.


More about Amy.


Finals Week is Really Really… Not That Bad

(Academics, Class of 2020) Permanent link
Opas Photo Finals week at most civilian colleges is academic hell on earth. At least that’s what most of my civilian friends tell me. It’s slightly different here in New London.


Maybe it’s because we already live under such academic rigor and lead such regimented lives that the idea of one final battery of tests to round out the semester is no less daunting than the prospect of formal room and wing or personnel inspections that keep us on our toes on a monthly basis. Regardless, finals are arguably the best time to be at the Academy. Because it’s often less regimented, the corps of cadets tends to have significantly higher morale. You’re guaranteed to hear three times as many “ahoys” from the firsties the week before finals than at any other time in the semester cycle.


Finals themselves are a breeze. With each exam allotted roughly three and a half hour blocks, it’s not uncommon to leave exams with plenty of time to spare. And the matter of studying? We get a whole day to conference with professors and instructors after classes end. Formation? Only in the mornings. Meals? Buffet style all day, every day. Sure, you still have to square as a 4/c, but you’ll definitely appreciate not having to wait for “seats” to be called every breakfast and lunch. Closed door study hour; something you will surely come to covet in your time at the Academy. This becomes available after noon, so cross your fingers for those morning exams so you can nap. Lucky enough to have a day in between exams? Route through your chain of command for a “short” and enjoy a night away from the Academy to destress. And best of all, if your last final is your last military obligation, you’re free to head off on leave as soon as you’re finished! All in all, it’s a highly rewarding end to the often-strenuous semesters.


One word of warning. Good luck finding a single energy drink in either the bookstore or the Exchange during finals week. All the engineering majors tend to sequester themselves in MacAllister with their stashes the last couple nights before their exams cramming and guzzling them like jet fuel.


More about Leah.