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From the Deck Plates

Cadet Jacob Earnshaw

Prior E-3 (Seaman) at Station Provincetown in Provincetown, MA Hometown: Round Hill, VA Major: Government

1/c Jacob EarnshawI applied to the Coast Guard Academy during my senior year of high school and did not receive an appointment. I knew the Coast Guard was what I wanted to do, so I immediately reached out to my local recruiter to enlist. I waited a year, resubmitted my application and got picked up to attend the Coast Guard Academy Scholars Program (CGAS) at Marion Military Institute before joining the class of 2024.

The transition from being an enlisted member to being a cadet was challenging. I went from having full autonomy, living on my own, paying bills, buying groceries, and commuting to work, to being a full-time student. While this change was an adjustment, I knew I was given an amazing opportunity and had to stay focused on my goal of becoming an officer. Joining sports teams, clubs and meeting lifelong friends made those sacrifices very easy to bear.

I think being prior enlisted at the Coast Guard Academy is a very special and unique experience. From the first day of Swab Summer, you are looked up to by your classmates and automatically put into leadership positions. Your classmates turn to you and your experience to teach them about the service they are joining. Because I went through boot camp and experienced life as a junior enlisted member, I know I will be able to connect with my crew in a special way.

If you are thinking about applying to CGA, do it! I am so thankful for my enlisted experience and know that I will be a better officer because of it. Life at CGA can be challenging, but the opportunities you get as a cadet are unbeatable. The friends I have made, the places I have traveled to, and the experiences I have had here make it all worth it.

Cadet William Cory

Prior E-3 (Seaman) on a Fast Response Cutter Hometown: Westminster, Maryland Major: Mechanical Engineering

Cadet William CoryGoing into high school I created my 15-year career plan which included attending the Coast Guard Academy and getting accepted into flight school. However, when I submitted my application for CGA, I was not selected, and as a result, went to a recruiting station shortly after. Enlistment was right for me because I had grown up in a Coast Guard family and had a decent understanding of what was expected and that I could develop the critical leadership desired of a Coast Guardsman. After boot camp, I reported to the USCGC ROLLIN FRITCH and spent my time becoming qualified quickly, and worked with my command to build my application. Upon entering Swab Summer at the Academy, I was able to embrace the change while still maintaining the perspective of my enlisted experience. I knew that I wanted to be a part of the officer corps, and that gave me the motivation to become the leader I would dutifully follow before arriving.

I value my enlisted experience greatly while working towards graduation because it has offered me the rare opportunity to know the standard out in the fleet. In my aim to always be a student of leadership, I  read and observe with intent rather than hope that my leadership philosophy will be well received outside the Academy environment.

If you are debating on whether to start an application, my advice will almost always be that you do. This is the institution that creates the best officers in the Armed Forces. If you have a desire to hold a position of great influence in addition to being technically proficient, this is the place to learn. Work hard to lift the burden off your superior’s shoulders, and with that comes trust and dependability. Leadership is no easy task, it takes a level of selflessness, ownership, and communication that every good leader can always strive to improve. Even so, becoming a leader is simple, apply.

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