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cadet blogs

The End to the Greatest Summer

(Just for Fun, The Cadet Experience, Class of 2015) Permanent link
Bilodeau Photo The beginning of August was the end of cadre. Watching the cadet candidates finish the CGAS program was satisfying and I look forward to seeing each one of the cadet candidates back next year for Swab Summer. After cadre, my friend and shipmate Mary Hazen, and I went to Sector Long Island Sound for the Marine Safety Inspection Program. We gave up a week of our leave to experience life at sector. We saw both the response and prevention sides of sector. The first day we responded to a boat that came loose from its mooring. Then, throughout the week, we shadowed the crew while they conducted a facilities inspection and a ferry inspection. We were also granted the opportunity to go to the station and drive the small boats.


The weekend before CAP week, Mary and I went to New York City. We ate delicious food, visited the Central Park Zoo, went to the Today Show, and we even met Luke Bryan and took a picture with him. The trip was definitely a great way to end the summer.


Mid-August started CAP week, followed by the start of the academic year. My classes this semester as an Operations Research major includes: NautSci III, Computer Modeling Languages, Probability Theory, Morals and Ethics, and Network and Non-Linear Optimization. It has been a good start to the academic year; I am pleased with the material in my classes and I have great professors.


More about Christina.


In the Fleet

(The Cadet Experience, Class of 2014) Permanent link
Quintero Photo In a couple of weeks the spring semester will come to a close, and although the year has moved on quickly I still can’t wait for it to be over. Since I am a second class, a couple of weeks ago I got word via email about where I will be stationed this summer. All my classmates were anxious to hear where they would be stationed and were optimistic they would get their first pick. The Coast Guard allows you to pick where you would like to be stationed and on what kind of a cutter, then, depending on availability, they assign you. Luckily, most of my classmates and I got our first choice. I was assigned to a 110-foot patrol boat down in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The reason I picked that cutter is because I knew they got a lot of action down in the Caribbean with migrant and drug interdiction. For me that is a potential future job and this summer will be a test of whether that job is for me or not. It’s good they send us out into the fleet to test our skills as future officers so that you can learn from mistakes or discover what you need to work on. Since we go to school for two long semesters sometimes it is easy to forget that you are at the Academy to eventually drive boats or fly. Going out to the fleet is a reminder of what your purpose is at the Academy, because how you do in academics or athletics does not have much bearing in the fleet.


But before I go out into my firstie summer I have to focus on finals, which are coming up. The way my finals schedule is set up has my departure date for Puerto Rico the day after my last final. So I need to study and pack my things up all at the same time. If I do well on the finals, then I won’t need to worry about my grades while I’m on the cutter. From my past experience in 3/c summer, the Coast Guard fleet experience is much different and at times more enjoyable than the Academy itself. That is why I am so eager to get out there. 3/c summer I was assigned to a small boat station to work on 25-foot small boats so I haven’t gotten a chance to be on a large cutter that is operational, aside from Eagle.


More about Carlos.


My Summer in a Nutshell

(Academics, Choosing the Coast Guard Academy, Overcoming Challenges, Class of 2015) Permanent link
Wu Photo Wow, it has been a while since I have written a blog! There was just so much going on since March that finally starting off the month of September, I feel able to sit down and recap on everything. So hopefully I can give any readers an insight on the academy life since my last entry in March. I have gone through a lot to say the least.


In April and May, I felt like a whole truckload of stress was dumped on me and I felt buried. There were finals coming up and also I had found out that my grandfather was in the hospital in critical condition. It was definitely a difficult time to focus on academics while also being concerned about the well-being of my family. However, I was able to really fall back on my Coast Guard family and they were very supportive through everything. Not only were my friends at CGA very helpful, but I found my company chief always had his door open and he was very understanding and provided many possible options for me. Through all of this, I truly appreciated being in a small and close knit service.


In June, my grandfather passed away. It was a blessing in disguise that 2/c summer was packed with a lot of things that kept my mind preoccupied. My family and I also knew that my grandfather would not have wanted us to stop living our lives. For 2/c summer, you apply for a cadre role you would prefer and with that cadre role is a specific summer schedule. My summer started off at the range where I was able to qualify as a sharpshooter with Sig Sauer P229 DAK. It was the first time I have ever shot a gun and it was very stress relieving. The next week for me was ROTR week which consisted of long days in a classroom studying Rules of the Road. At the end of the week, we took an exam with 50 multiple choice requiring a 90% to pass. It was hard to remember all the specifics and I did not pass the first time since I got 88, but I was given the opportunity to retake the exam later in the summer and I pulled off the bare minimum of a 90. After ROTR week, my cadre section had leave and I was able to go home and help out the family. After leave, I had T-boat week, which was very educational. Half the time was spent in the simulation room and the other half was spent on the T-boats down at waterfront where we had hands-on experience in communicating with each other, mooring, anchoring, man-overboard procedures, and driving the boat. It was good to practice and become familiar with how to maneuver a boat. After a week working with T-Boats, it was prep week for Swab Summer. I could not believe how time flew; it felt like yesterday when I was a swab reporting in to the Coast Guard Academy. Prep week was a lot of work and a lot of trainings. However, we were under the good guidance of a well-organized summer regimental staff and although we felt like we were not prepared for the incoming class of 2017, we were ready. We had a run through of R-Day and then a full day at Stonington as a class, while back at CGA there was an open house for the class of 2017 and their parents.


My Summer in a Nutshell (Continued) PDF Icon  


More about Ellie.