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cadet blogs

Bring Out the Bridge Coats

(The Cadet Experience, Class of 2016) Permanent link
Doctolero Photo Half way done! This semester is going by so fast. I can’t believe it’s already midterms. Midterm tests were stressful but I definitely had a better study plan then I had last year. As a freshman there was a lot of late night cramming; this year I was able to get to bed at a decent hour. I’m starting to like my courses more and more as the time progresses. I don’t know if I actually like the material, or just like that I’m getting good grades.


We just had Halloween. Unfortunately, I did not have time to go get a costume this year; and it's frowned upon and punishable by death to dress up as a “civilian.” So I threw on my Jake the dog T-shirt and some tights and called myself a dog. I could have put on cowboy boots and a flannel, like every other cadet at the Academy, and been a cow girl but that’s what my best friend was going to dress up as. As per tradition, we had a Halloween dinner and trick or treating on Admiral’s hill. It’s not the most exciting way to spend Halloween, but it is a chance to get a short or long if you’re an upper class or carry-on as a fourth class.


But as midterm comes and goes, so does summer. The leaves are changing and the weather is getting colder. While some people welcome the winter with open arms, I loathe it. Last year while everyone was having snowball fights and making snow angels, I was wrapped up in a blanket, in my room, far away from the snow. I’m a Miami girl that spends Christmas on the beach. This winter thing is no bueno for me. It feels like no matter how many layers I wear, the cold find its way to my skin. The worse days are the ones where they say we can’t wear a jacket and it’s like 60 degrees. The UOD (Uniform of the Day) god obviously is not from the south or he would understand my pain. This year I’m investing in some long johns, hopefully those will keep me warm on the cold days ahead.



More about Rheanastasia.


The Month Flew By

(Athletics, Just for Fun, Class of 2015) Permanent link
Cantrell Photo This past month has been very eventful! The month started with Columbus Day weekend and the corps was granted a long. I went to my best friend Kelsey’s house with a bunch of my girl friends. We had a lot of fun watching movies, shopping, and getting loads of rest.


Homecoming was also a big event this year and it was awesome to see the graduated classes come back to reminisce on their time spent at the Academy and in the Coast Guard. I was fortunate enough to attend a women’s leadership brunch on Sunday morning with multiple officers. I met a lot of really great people who were so willing to talk about their experiences and give great advice to young cadets. It was a really inspiring experience to hear about the different tracks they took and what they are doing now. I feel like I gained mentors in a matter of hours that will help me throughout my career.


My first swimming and diving meet occurred this month, which was fun and nerve-racking. I always freak myself out before I do a dive, but I have to remember to stay calm and focused. The team did really great at the meet and I love being a part of the team. We have the best coaches who are wonderful role models to all of us.


Halloween is always a morale booster around the Academy. We were all able to dress up in costumes and eat dinner in the wardroom. They had a costume contest and trick or treating on the hill. It was a great time for all of the cadets and fun to be out of uniform and to see all of the creative costumes.


Veterans Day weekend is coming up and the corps gets another long. I have a swimming and diving meet so I won’t be able to leave until Saturday evening, but I am still looking forward to having a relaxing time at my best friend’s house.



More about Sara.


Only in the Boyshouse

(Athletics, Overcoming Challenges, Class of 2016) Permanent link
Kukich Photo After a long right shoulder reconstruction in the spring and hearing the news that I would have yet another on my left shoulder this fall, I made the decision to volunteer any help I could to the men’s rowing team. Why the men’s team many asked; with a new head coach, Colin Regan, and a shortage of coxswains, the opportunity for me to improve myself as a rower could not be ignored.


After a conversation with the head coach I thought my intentions were clear – my primary focus would be to assist the novice squad with their technical progress and fill in as a coxswain if necessary until the position was filled. I made it a personal goal to befriend the varsity coxswain, fellow blogger Peter Driscoll, and ensure every practice I learned from his skill and if possible, challenged his abilities. Not able to row myself I still wanted to “go fast”, a typical rower motto, and I knew this could happen by pushing myself as hard as the guys of the “Boyshouse” every day.


At some point in the season Coach Regan decided I would take the varsity boat out on the water more or less to give the rowers exposure to different coxing. This first practice on the water was just as awkward as the spring season had been; a rower would stretch over spilling sweat on me or accidentally spew a string of sweat across my chest. I somehow managed to survive and crash land the boat at the dock, thinking it was the worst practice the men had ever had. My coach looked over at me as I stumbled off the dock and said, “You know you can make a difference to this team”. And then later when I asked the men what they thought about the practice, none of their critiques were about my performance. Looking back, this first integrated varsity practice was when they formally adopted me as “one of the guys”, but it wasn’t for months later that I would understand what an honor it was.


Every day we made boats faster and at some point my goals shifted from just the novice crew to the entire team, even the four fastest men. I wasn’t aware of their subtle gestures – inviting me to study in the library, complimenting me as we took the boat out of the water, and offering to carry the coxswains into the boats when there weren’t docks at the race site. By our first major race, Head of the Housatonic, I felt part of the team but didn’t share the same pride in boat speed because I was no longer a rower. For me to reach that moment it took the bow man of the four I raced with at Head of the Charles, one of the largest rowing regattas in the world, to say, “I know you don’t like to hear it, but you are a good coxswain”. Racing Head of the Charles as a rower was the second best experience in my 11 year rowing career: the first was racing October 19th, 2013 as a coxswain. From the moment I stepped into the boat I felt connected to the guys, not just in our hull, but the other Coast Guard boat and the hundreds of other male competitors on the water. Being part of Coast Guard Men’s Rowing has made me mentally tougher, spiritually stronger, and confident that my teammates can accomplish greatness. At the last regatta of the season the novice men who I had started with won gold and bronze in two events, and two varsity boats I coxed brought home two additional third place medals. It has been an honor and pleasure to cox the men of Coast Guard Rowing this fall season. The Boyshouse has redefined my Academy experience and I look forward to abiding by the bro code for another competitive season this spring.



More about Sarah.