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cadet blogs

Nothing I Can't Handle

(Athletics, The Cadet Experience, Class of 2017) Permanent link
Racz Photo Crew season has officially gotten underway. I competed in my first ever collegiate competition in Middletown, Connecticut against Wesleyan University. Though it was great to be out and competing, the race did not go too well. We lost by a good amount, so it wasn’t the best way to start of the spring season. My next race was against Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island. We didn’t race their varsity because they are a top Division I school for rowing, but we did race against their third and fourth varsity teams. We did average in the race, but a lot better from the previous week. I’ve had great experiences so far in my first two races of the season. For someone who didn’t row in high school, I’ve had to make big adjustments and adapt very quickly. I look forward to my races in the future because I love competing and representing the United States Coast Guard Academy.


In a month from now, I will be heading off to my summer unit in Florida. I’m nervous, but excited at the same time to take the next step in my cadet training. During my time at my unit, I will be able to experience the role of enlisted personnel in the Coast Guard. I will work with the enlisted members in order to complete the jobs that they do in a typical day. I am a little nervous to go to my unit, but I know that I have the tools necessary to do the best job that I can on the cutter. I’ll be going with another 4/c who I know well, so that will help if I ever need assistance during my summer training. I will then have the opportunity to spend six weeks on the Barque Eagle. I spent a week on Eagle over Swab Summer, but this summer I will have the opportunity to get more hands-on training. I will get to bond with my classmates as well. This summer should be a lot of fun and I can’t wait to get started.


At this point, the 4/c are beginning to transition into the roles of 3/c. We are beginning to get more responsibility and are being trusted to do a lot more than before. It feels weird knowing that I will be a 3/c in less than a month. It is a lot of responsibility, but nothing that I can’t handle.


Thanks for reading and good luck to everyone who may be making your college decision. Remember that no choice is a bad one. Go to the place that will give you opportunities and bring you happiness along the way.



More about Benjamin.


New Roommate Every Semester

(The Cadet Experience, Class of 2016) Permanent link
Ellis Photo Hi everyone! When I go home and talk to my friends that go to “normal” college, they are always surprised to hear that I move rooms and have a new roommate every semester. This is something we do here to ensure that we can learn to deal with change and other personalities. This is good preparation for the fleet, since we will be on a boat at sea for possibly months at a time with the same people. This semester I am rooming with one of my best friends here. Last semester, my roommate and I asked to room with each other this semester. We hoped we would get it, but were not completely sure we would. However, when the rooming list came out right before Christmas break, we saw that we would be living together! We were super excited, however, a little skeptical. You see, we spend the majority of our day with each other without being roommates. We are friends, have most of the same classes, and are in the same division. Before living together, we joked that we were going to go crazy being with each other so much! Now that we have been living together for three months, I’ve found that it has worked out really well for each of us. Our key to success is being able to understand each other’s personality. For example, I am an introvert, so I like to sit quietly doing my homework with my headphones on. However, my roommate is an extrovert; she plays loud music, is always talking to others and inviting people over, or going to other people’s rooms. But since we know each other’s personalities, we have learned when to leave each other alone and when to be hyper and social.


My roommate and I have had some of the best times together this semester. In January, we went to the Statue of Liberty with our other friend, Christi Frost. We then went to my house to spend the weekend. At school, it’s awesome that we are roommates, especially when we have a test in one of our classes. We can just study in our room together. The same goes for group projects that we have together. And for division work, we are already together, so it is easy for our work to get done! But it’s not all work in this room! We are both absolutely obsessed with Frozen! Almost every night, right before bed, we listen to the Frozen soundtrack! We both know basically all the words! Much to the surprise of both of us, being roommates has been an awesome time and has truly worked out in our favor.


I believe that it is truly valuable that we switch rooms and roommates every semester here at the Academy. It teaches us how to deal with others in close quarters. It prepares us for the fleet when we may be stuck on a boat with only 100 other people for months at a time. It is a truly valuable lesson.



More about Kayla.


Major Decision

(Academics, Class of 2017) Permanent link
Seaman Photo Choosing the major you’re going to study for the next four years can be a difficult decision. I applied as a Government major, but this past week switched into Operations Research and Computer Analysis. I chose to switch for many reasons. Operations Research is geared toward solving problems through math and logic. I find that appealing because there is always a need for advancement or more efficiency. Also, this year I realized that math comes more easily to me than other subjects. Operations Research is a math-oriented major, as opposed to Government, which is mostly writing.


The use of computers and problem solving is also a growing field in both the Coast Guard and the civilian world. I believe that the computer programming taught in the major is both interesting and a helpful skill to have with today’s advancing technology. When I made this decision, I talked to a couple teachers and upper class. I found that our majors do not have much weight when determining our jobs in the fleet, but come into play when we retire and join the civilian sector. From there I thought about which major, paired with great operational knowledge from the fleet, would provide me with the best job. I determined that to be OR. Even though I won’t be majoring in Government, the Academy still has many opportunities for me to be involved in the subject. For example, we are required to take a Government course 3/c year and I have been told that there are opportunities for OR majors to work alongside Government majors in some of the projects they work on.


Through this experience, I have learned that there is no right major to study at the Academy. The right major is the one that you can be most interested in and most successful at. So don’t worry if you aren’t sure of what you want to major in yet because 4/c year does a good job of showing you your strengths and interests academically, and it is easy to switch once you get here.



More about Rachel.