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cadet blogs

A Bustling Summer

(The Cadet Experience, Class of 2015) Permanent link   All Posts
Gurtler Photo Another summer here and gone, leaving me to wonder how it ended so soon. However, the more I reflect on the past three months, I realize it’s not a question of how the summer flew by so fast, but rather a question of how it was humanly possible to fit in as much as my classmates and I did in three months.


My summer began with three weeks of leave in Wisconsin, where I visited with friends and family and celebrated my younger brother’s high school graduation. When I returned back to the Academy, I found myself immediately swept up into a busy week-by-week schedule. My initial week back was spent at the shooting range, qualifying with a Sig Sauer pistol. The following week consisted of classes focused on the ‘Rules of the Road.’ Fortunately, I passed the test that culminated all of the ROTR information we had learned throughout the week so I did not have to worry about retaking it during CAP Week. My third week back was a week dedicated to preparing to be a cadre. 2015 participated in a mock R-Day, as well as numerous trainings on how to handle certain situations as a cadre. This was all in preparation of what was to come the following week…


My three weeks as cadre were the three most exhausting but rewarding weeks of my life. As a cadre, I worked to be stern but fair. I learned early on that if I did not hold them accountable for their actions, little would be learned by them and by me. At the same time, I strived to be a mentor – someone that they could come to not just during the summer training period but during the academic school year as well. Granted, I did yell a time or two, and I may have forced Hotel Company to do a little intensive physical training, but I did this out of respect for my swabs. I wanted nothing but for them to succeed. When Hotel swabs received their shoulder boards I wanted them to know they had earned them. Additionally, my brother was a swab in Bravo Company this past summer. Words cannot describe how proud I am of him, and it only furthers my bond with 2017.


My summer concluded with one week spent at Air Station Elizabeth City in North Carolina, one week working on T-Boats, and two weeks aboard a 44-foot sailing vessel that stopped at a number of different ports including Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket, and Newport, Rhode Island.


See what I mean when I say I was busy?! Bottom line is that I experienced so much this summer with my class. I am thankful for my fellow cadre and for my swabs for allowing me to learn from my highs and lows and teaching me so much about leadership, followership, and myself along the way. This summer has left me contemplating the possibility of applying for next summer’s command staff. I would love to be a part of 2018’s R-Day experience…


More about Victoria.