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cadet blogs


(Choosing the Coast Guard Academy, Overcoming Challenges, Class of 2019) Permanent link   All Posts
Friedman Photo I’m almost ¾ of the way done with my 2/c year and I’m trying to coordinate my 1/c summer to figure out exactly what I want to do when I graduate. With all the planning for the future, I decided to do a little reflecting from where I am now.


I thought about my decision to come to the Academy and I’ll admit it’s sometimes frustrating missing out on the ‘normal’ college experience. I talk with my friends who are at civilian schools about their life and it sounds nice. Being able to sleep in, leave campus whenever they want, wear what they want to class, not have the added military obligations, etc.


Then I went to New Orleans for a diversity and leadership conference. I thought about how much that community went through after Hurricane Katrina and the role the Coast Guard played in helping the people in the area. I talked to Coasties who spent months in New Orleans responding to Deep Water Horizon and the impact they had on the maritime community in the Gulf of Mexico. I thought of everything the Coast Guard has done and continues to do in response to Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria.


Looking at the Coast Guard actions during these disasters and knowing that soon I’ll get to be a part of that endeavor makes the sacrifice worth it. It still stings when you have to stay in on Friday night and clean your room because you have to get up at 7 on a Saturday morning for an inspection, but you accept the sting because you know there’s a bigger picture. I know that I am associated with an exceptional humanitarian service that is making a positive difference in the lives of people every day.


No, the Academy is not ‘normal’ college, it is difficult, and honestly it is exasperating at times, but for me, knowing that I’ll be able to make a positive impact on the world makes it worth it.


If you have any questions feel free to email me at


More about Jill.