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cadet blogs

Echo Company Commander

(Overcoming Challenges, Class of 2012) Permanent link   All Posts
 Chris Shih So…my first official cadet blog. What do I write about? I guess I will talk about being Echo Company Commander (CC) since I don’t think it’s something the other cadets have talked about.

Well, Company Commander is a position held by eight cadets at the Academy, one in charge of each of the Academy’s eight companies (which encompasses three departments, and about 120 cadets). To be a CC you have to go through a selection process where you first write about why you want to be in charge of so many people, and then are given an interview with some tricky questions by an officer in the Coast Guard. I went through this process last semester, and somehow was selected to be Company Commander. I had a lot of reasons as to why I wanted to be CC but the main one was to make the people’s lives around me better. I am glad I was selected to be a CC because so far it has been a great experience. I can’t believe how busy I am, and even with my “easy” major I don’t go to bed before midnight ever! Well, maybe I take a nap sometimes after 1600 (maybe in class, too…wait no…wait what?), but the occasion is rare.

I would say that keeping everyone happy is probably the hardest thing to do. In any organization, people will never be satisfied. If you make an announcement people can’t hear you and they just want it sent in an email, if you send an email people don’t read it and want you to make an announcement. It makes me laugh that for all the years I pushed back on people in positions of authority, that it is all coming back at me this semester. Another thing that is difficult is telling your classmates what to do. You have to understand that for three years at the Academy you and members of your class are all essentially the same rank, and have another cadet above you to tell you what to do. But when you become seniors you become the highest ranking cadets, and people like me are the ones who have to tell everyone (classmates included) what to do. It’s good experience for when I have to give orders to someone 20 years older than when I get out in the fleet, but boy is it uncomfortable.

Okay I am making it seem that this job just terrible, and it’s not! Being a CC is pretty awesome! I have more pride in my company than I ever thought I would, and when I can make the people around me happy, it is one of the best feelings in the world! Right now my company (Echo), is absolutely killing it. Whether it comes to formal room and wings (hardcore cleaning of the barracks), personnel inspections (uniform perfection days), or drill (that you have to see to truly understand), we are always near the top. I know we are going to continue this trend of excellence, and who knows? Maybe we will be honor company at the end of the semester.

Okay well…this blog wasn’t as enthralling as I hoped it would be. I think it’s just because I am a noob when it comes to writing these, and just need practice. Maybe someone who is reading this can give me a topic to write about? Remember…my email is Thanks for reading!

More about Chris.