One thing I always remembered when I was applying to the Academy and browsing through the blogs was reading about how the 3/c were so happy they didn’t have to do all of the 4/c duties anymore. But no one really explained what the 4/c duties were. There is a good amount but I thought I’d give the top duties.
Clocks – At the Academy we have formation twice a day, before breakfast and before lunch. Starting 10 minutes before every formation there has to be a 4/c at every clock in the company’s wing area sounding off the time to go to formation and daily indoc (meals, days to go, movies, CGA sports games).
Bracing Up/Bussing – Whenever 4/c are in Chase Hall we are braced up, greeting the upper class, squaring corners, squaring our meals, and not talking to each other. Outside of Chase Hall, we have to bus everywhere, which means we march from class to class as a group. The most annoying part of this is that people have different length legs so depending on who’s in the front of your formation you’re either crawling or sprinting to class.
Indoc Tests – The Running Light doesn’t go away after Swab Summer. Every week 4/c are assigned three to four pages of indoc to memorize, then Sunday night there is an indoc test which 4/c must get an 80% or above on to pass. If you fail there are consequences such as extra indoc tests, note cards, or demerits. Toward the end of 4/c year, you take a cumulative exam, called boards. Everyone in your class must pass in order to earn carry-on and not have to brace-up anymore.
Note Cards – As a 4/c note cards are transformed from a helpful way to keep track of notes to a torturous punishment. If you’ve ever been in detention before and had to write something 100 times you know the premise of note cards. The difference is each note card has to be properly formatted, which means they take about two minutes each; when you get a lot it takes a long time and hurts your hand.
Formal Room and Wing – This is a big inspection the corps has once a month, as a 4/c we have the duty of cleaning the wing area and any other assigned spaces around Chase Hall. This usually results in a late night. It isn’t the best way to spend a Friday night but as a 4/c you’re not allowed to leave the Academy on Fridays anyway and in my company the upper class will usually get pizza or ice cream for us when we’re up late cleaning.
This makes 4/c year sound awful; I’ll admit it’s not great all the time but I’ve definitely had more good days than bad. These duties quickly become just a part of your daily routine and don’t seem as inconvenient. Plus, you have your entire class with you dealing with the same thing. If you have any questions, please feel free to email me at Jill.M.Friedman@uscga.edu.
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