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cadet blogs

The Roller Coaster Ride to the Finish Line

(The Cadet Experience, Class of 2014) Permanent link
Keith Photo Hello friends!


It’s been awhile, but I am writing to you from room E231 while occasionally glancing outside of my window. The weather is gorgeous, and spring has finally come after a long, brutal winter.


The Academy experience is truly a roller coaster ride. For most of the time, it seems like you and your classmates are sitting in the cart, slowly going up the incline. Very, very slowly. And it seems like it will take forever to get to the top and over the hump.


However, once you get over the hump things pick up at break-neck speed. From Billet Night (where you find out your first duty station), to Castle Dance (last class formal), to late nights in Mac Hall struggling under the weight of a capstone project, to filling out confusing PCS paperwork, to Dining In (a dinner where the class is welcomed into the Officer Corps), to finals rapidly approaching we are, in nautical terms, CBDR (Constant Bearing, Decreasing Range) to our final waypoint: Commencement and Graduation.


It’s incredible that I’ve made it this far; I certainly couldn’t see myself as a 1/c when I was a swab and it’s still hard to imagine that I will be putting on Ensign shoulder boards and a combination cover with an Eagle on it in a mere 37 days. The Class of 2014’s days are numbered, and I’m doing my best to enjoy this roller coaster ride with everyone before our cart comes to a stop and we step out into the world.



More about Jordan.


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.