Like most of my classmates, I still remember June 28, 2010 very well. Reporting-In Day for the Class of 2014, a day filled with both excitement and anxiety. I clearly recall waiting in line in Leamy Hall, joining my company for the ride up to Chase Hall, and, of course, getting off the bus.
Though it doesn’t feel like it, more than a year and a half has passed since Swab Summer commenced for the Class of 2014. Now we are preparing to be the cadre, the larger than life individuals who were responsible for forging military academy cadets out of regular high school students. And now, in just a few short months, we will be those individuals, tasked with providing a disciplined Class of 2016 to learn the ways of a Coast Guard Officer.
Preparation for this awesome task has already begun. During our Swab Summer, we kept a journal of sorts, called “Thoughts of the Day.” Now, we’re getting to look at them. While we didn’t care for this at the time, these notebooks now provide invaluable insight into our Swab Summer experiences. We can read about what made our good days good and our bad days bad.
That’s not all, though. During our professional development discussions with our company chiefs and company officers, we frequently discuss the upcoming summer. We talk about leadership styles, motivation techniques, and other relevant information. The company officers and chiefs are great sources of guidance for any Academy issue, not just Swab Summer. They are not afraid to share their wealth of knowledge and experience with cadets.
In addition, we are expanding our horizons by interacting with the Class of 2013. Because even class years are trained by even class years and odd class years are trained by odd class years, some strategies differ between even and odd years. By combining the best points of each, we can create the best possible training environment for the Class of 2016.
Congratulations to all of those appointed to the Coast Guard Academy Class of 2016. We’ll be ready for you.
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