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cadet blogs

Almost Thanksgiving!

(The Cadet Experience, Class of 2015) Permanent link   All Posts
 Peter Driscoll I can hardly believe that Thanksgiving leave is just around the corner. I have two shortened weeks and one full week standing between me and seeing my family for the first time since Mystic. (For those of you who don’t know, Mystic is a day in the middle of the summer when the swabs get their class flag on a field trip over at Mystic Seaport. After the ceremony, we get a couple hours of liberty—a blissful release from the stress of Swab Summer!) I cannot wait.

My academic schedule is quickly building up. I only have about five exams, two projects, and several packets until finals the second week of December. In fact, my partner and I are going to start building our truss for SED tonight, and I have an outline for my research paper due tomorrow! I still cannot believe that time has flown so quickly and that the semester is almost over. It seemed impossible in August, but you really do learn that you can do anything here.

I don’t know if I mentioned this in my last post, but crew has entered the winter season. We came off the water in the middle of October, and are now focusing on conditioning and strength training for the spring (sprint) season. Our spring break training trip, and getting back onto the Thames River, cannot come soon enough—I miss coxing. I’m really glad that I did crew this year; I learned so much about my rowers and myself. Honestly, being thrown in the boat the second week of practice and told that it was my responsibility was daunting. As if that wasn’t enough, I had eight rowers who expected me to know what to do all the time. Great preparation for the fleet as a junior officer! We did well in our one race, and plan on tearing it up in the spring.

I’ve grown by leaps and bounds in one semester here at CGA. I’ve become more confident and self-assured than I was when I timidly reported on R-Day. The military aspect of life here in Chase Hall has definitely helped in that regard. We had our last formal room and wing inspection of the semester on Saturday, and I was lead 4/c for that evolution. (The 4/c have to rigorously clean the company area and various areas of Chase Hall for these inspections.) I spent the night before cleaning my common space, running around answering questions, supervising the cleaning, and inspecting areas to ensure that they met standards. I did not get to bed until 0145 that night, and woke up at 0545 to finish. But the loss of sleep and increased stress was worth it—we beat Echo by .01 point to win the inspection!

Academics, athletics, and military obligations have all helped to develop a leader of character, like the Academy is supposed to do. I have learned great leadership lessons, like the importance of being confident for the eight rowers depending on you to know what to do, or the necessity of putting 110% effort into organizing and cleaning for inspection. Hopefully, I will do even better next semester. But first, turkey!

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