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CADET BLOGS

cadet blogs

A Full Fall Semester

(Academics, Athletics, Class of 2018) Permanent link
Haerr Photo Hey, everybody! Long time since I’ve updated you about life at the Academy. This is now the fall of my 2/c year – crazy how fast three years went!

 

This summer was especially rewarding to be able to embark on many adventures and learn so much about my leadership style. I participated in the Coastal Sail Program, navigating my way to Nantucket, Martha’s Vineyard, Block Island, and several other ports with five of my closest shipmates. It was quite the experience to learn how to navigate safely and efficiently, planning every step and calling every move. I also got to lead the Class of 2020 in their journey to become successful cadets here at the Academy. I was Cadre 2 for Swab Summer, which means I worked with my classmates to develop the swabs for the last four weeks of their summer experience. We taught them drill, basic indoctrination of the Coast Guard, and physically conditioned them. It was a difficult yet rewarding challenge to decide how we would train the swabs.

 

This fall I’m busy with Civil Engineering classes, cheerleading, and being a Master at Arms or MAA. Officially taking major-specific classes has been so exciting, especially because we got our very own hard hats! In the labs, we have made our own asphalt concrete, Portland cement concrete, and have conducted many safe drinking water tests. We’ve taken multiple field trips. Our most recent field trip was to the Groton Waste Water Treatment Plant, where we toured their facilities. In cheerleading, we have progressed many of our stunting skills and sharpened our cheers. We’ve done multiple basket tosses, extensions, half-ups, and full downs! As an MAA, I get to work directly with the 1/c and the department, as well as with the 4/c in Alfa company. It’s kind of the best of both worlds because I get to make positive changes within the department, as well as continually help develop the Class of 2020 and maintain that close relationship with them.

 

As the fall semester continues, I’m nervous for the cold approaching. However, it’s predicted that we will have an exciting winter! We already got our first snowfall last week!

 

More about Kathryn.

 

Running Down a Dream

(Athletics, Overcoming Challenges, Class of 2017) Permanent link
Culp Photo Actually, not really a dream… I never had grand aspirations of running a full marathon until last May. In fact, if you had told 4/c or 3/c me that I would ever run more than three miles at once, let alone 26.2, I would have run far, far, away from you. (Nah, scratch that. I would have power-walked, because I didn’t do that whole “running” thing.) But some switch flipped in 2/c me. My marathoner friends certainly influenced me, but I think the interest stuck when I realized that running actually doesn’t have to be miserable. I go at my own pace, on my own schedule, with my own goals and, believe it or not, running became one of my favorite hobbies. Maybe it’s because I know I’m taking care of myself; maybe it’s because my workouts are the 1 to 2 hours where I truly do get to be left alone; maybe it’s because I have seen a significant and rewarding increase in my fitness over the last couple of years. Regardless, I have, at this point, completed two half-marathons and a full marathon! 4/c and 3/c Abby are calling 1/c Abby insane right now; but, so far, running those miles is one of the most awesome blessings from God in my life.

 

Physical fitness is a crucial part of cadet education (hence physical fitness exams twice a year), but I’ve learned working doesn’t have to be some brutal task you drag yourself through miserably every day. The Academy allows you to explore many different athletic activities to find just the right fit for your interests and abilities. For some, that takes the form of a varsity team for the sport you always played in high school – baseball, soccer, swimming, basketball, rifle, sailing, and so on. Others jump into new clubs to investigate activities like ballroom dancing, equestrian sports, or fencing. For people like me who aren’t really into the competitive nature of varsity or even club athletics, you can snag your mandatory sports credit doing something low-key like intercompany sports, and focus your efforts on those individual hobbies that make you genuinely happy and remove stress. I’ve found my athletic niche in casual, fun runs around the New England area, despite coming in as an out-of-shape swab who avoided that dreaded activity…but thanks to some awesome runner friends and the Academy’s focus on physical fitness development, that’s all changed. I can’t wait for the next race!

 

More about Abby.

 

ORCA, Not the Whale

(Academics, Athletics, Class of 2019) Permanent link
Friedman Photo Time flies when you’re having fun…or really busy. I always forget how that saying goes. The school year has quickly ramped up and I can’t believe we’re at midterms and selecting classes for next semester. I’m an Operations Research and Computer Analysis (ORCA) major, which is applied math. I just started my in major classes, Multivariable Calculus and Linear Algebra, and so far I love the major. The focus of the major is using math and logic to solve problems. I was that kid in high school that was asking the teacher when we would ever need to know this in ‘real life.’ Thankfully, I don’t have that question anymore because the teachers relate what we’re learning in class to what we’ll do in the fleet as officers or civilians once we transition out of the Coast Guard. I look forward to getting even more in depth with ORCA next semester when I take Differential Equations, Linear Optimization, and Discrete Mathematics.

 

Outside of the classroom, rugby season is in full swing. As I write this, the women’s team is four games into the season, 4-0, have four consecutive shut outs, and are 14th in the nation. We may only be a club sport but beyond our sport we’re tight knit and take care of each other on and off the pitch. I mention rugby because while cadets are required to play sports two of the three seasons each year and can fulfill this obligation through playing intercompany sports. Many play varsity or club sports because they supply an oasis from the monotony and grind of Chase Hall. Teammates provide an additional outlet and support system inside Chases Hall. When considering the Academy, I recommend looking into a sport, club or varsity, whether you’ve played the sport before or not, it offers a support system, break from the day, and a another family.

 

If you have any questions feel free to email me Jill.M.Friedman@uscga.edu.

 

More about Jill.

 

Graduation is Fast Approaching

(Academics, Athletics, The Cadet Experience) Permanent link
Daghir Photo I am happy to say that the year has picked up to its usual tempo, complete with more homework, less sleep, and more things on my to-do list than I can actually articulate from memory. If there is one thing I have learned between this school and yoga is that all you need to do is take a deep breath and start at the top of the list. This week is a little hectic because it is not only a four day week, but it is in fact spirit week, completely devoted to the football game we have coming up on Saturday: Bears versus the Mariners. Merchant Marine Academy and Coast Guard Academy rivalry is something that is ingrained in us constantly for about the first month of school and then we take a year off and wait to start alllllll over. It should be a fun time, even with the required morale events like our pep rally and actual attendance of the football game.

 

But enough on required morale, the real excitement stems from the prospect that I will be getting my billet list (the list of all available jobs for me to choose from) sometime very soon, possibly tomorrow! I will then have a little less than a month to put together my top picks, of which I will submit and wait. I will be following the same timeline as OCS for this, so my billet night, the night when I figure out where I am going, will be with the OCS class that will be graduating in November! I will be graduating on December 16th! Something that I also just found out this week…

 

So in addition to preparing for graduation and figuring out all of the real world aspects of my life that I will be in charge of very soon, I have been staying busy with a plethora of activities. Lacrosse just started this week officially for the fall, and although I will not be playing in the spring, I am looking to get one last season of play in, especially while the weather is nice. My teammates are really an amazing group and since my classmates have graduated, I would say that I feel even closer to my lax girls. We have started practicing every day and working with our lifting coach every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. In addition to lacrosse, I have been doing community service at the New London Homeless Shelter on Wednesday nights, where a group of cadets brings dinner to the people staying at the shelter.

 

School is a lot of fun, my schedule is nice and not too packed although this is a bit deceiving as I am actually signed up for a lot of extra work in the form of independent studies. I am taking scuba, of which we have completed three in-pool dives and, after one more, we will be venturing out to the open water. For my independent studies, I am doing an analysis of a treaty that we are working on as chair of the Arctic Counsel with Canada. Basically the treaty will make it so that countries will be permitted to conduct Arctic research in other countries’ Economic Exclusive Zones, a practice that is currently being exercised by some and not others. The paper will hopefully be used to outline the Coast Guard’s role in the application of the treaty and also look into similar historic events in which countries in the Arctic worked through treaties even in tense political times, giving us an idea of what to expect. The other study I am completing is a continuation of my summer work with GIS in which I will be finishing my Geographic Response Plans for the sectors New York and Long Island Sound. I like to be busy because it makes the time go that much faster, taking me closer to graduation! Sorry about another lengthy post. GO BEARS!

 

More about Lucy.

 

Spring Track and Field

(Athletics, Class of 2018) Permanent link
Burchill Photo The Academy isn't just all academics and military, thletics plays a big part! I run track and cross country and love my teammates and the sport. From hanging out at meets, to working hard alongside one another everyday, I wouldn't trade these people for the world. They really help you get through the tough times.

Rachel's video blog YouTube Icon

 

More about Rachel.