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Parents and Mentors: Come Experience College Exceeded

Congratulations on your student’s interest in the United States Coast Guard Academy. Ours is an elite education that outshines other schools with a proud mission—to develop officer-ready leaders of character. With a commitment to excellence and service above self, our graduates embark on meaningful careers as Coast Guard officers serving their country and humanity. To be a candidate for such a noble and high-value educational experience is extraordinary.

Why the USCGA?

Ranked among the nation’s most prestigious and selective institutions of higher learning, the Coast Guard Academy presents an unrivaled opportunity to attend an elite professional college that charges no tuition and guarantees a challenging and rewarding career upon graduation.

  • An academic program that transcends all others—ranked among the nation’s best
  • Holistic education emphasizing leadership, physical fitness, and professional development
  • Graduates who go directly to positions of leadership
  • The only American military service dedicated to humanitarian missions

Academic Majors

The U.S. Coast Guard Academy offers rigorous programs of study in nine major academic fields. Cadets study in small classes where they are able to form close mentoring relationships with a highly distinguished and very accessible faculty.


Our world-class advising program provides an individual development plan for each cadet to help them outpace the competition. From deciding on a major, to pursuing leadership options, to selecting a career path, advisors help guide and mentor cadets in meeting their academic and professional goals.


In support of the Academy and its cadets, parents and families are encouraged to participate in a variety of on- and off-campus events throughout the year.

Cost and Tuition

At the Coast Guard Academy there is no cost for tuition, room, or board. In fact, our cadets are paid a stipend and most graduate with savings, not debt. Imagine, graduating from college, stepping into a career as a United States Coast Guard officer, and doing so with zero debt. That’s college exceeded.

Campus, Facilities and Region

Overlooking the Thames River, our picturesque campus offers the idyllic New England college setting. The surrounding region, with its rich maritime heritage, provides abundant activities and entertainment.

Campus Safety

The Coast Guard Academy is dedicated to maintaining a safe campus environment. We hold firmly to the standards of the Clery Act—by implementing effective safety measures and resources, and by creating a transparent culture regarding campus safety.

CGA Parents Association

The CGA Parents Association is a volunteer organization whose sole purpose is to support the Academy and its cadets. The Parents Association provides needed information, resources, and an important sense of community for the parents and families of cadets.

Inclusion and Diversity

Understanding diverse cultures and perspectives is vital in the service of a diverse nation and world. To that end, the Coast Guard Academy is more diverse today than ever before—34% are minority cadets, and 39% are women!


cadets enrolled at the Academy

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student-to-faculty ratio
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job placement. Graduates are obligated to serve for five years and 85% stay longer!
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of active duty graduates go on to grad school (paid for by the Coast Guard).

Sponsor Family Application

Thank you for submitting your application to be part of the Sponsor Family Program. Your application will be processed in the upcoming week. Coast Guard Academy’s policy on background screening now requires all adults (everyone 18 and older living in the home) who volunteer to mentor, teach, coach or sponsor cadets, whether on or off Coast Guard Academy grounds, to be screened every 5 years. They are required to provide personal information (name, birth date and social security number) for the purpose of conducting a criminal background check.

The Security Officer at the Coast Guard Academy, CWO2 Gina Polkowski, is overseeing this process. Her email is:

Sponsor Family designations fall into several different categories. Below are the guidelines to help you determine how best to meet the background screening requirement:

  1. If you are Coast Guard active duty you do not need to apply for an additional Background Check. You will be vetted through the Coast Guard system by CWO2 Polkowski.
  2. If you are a Civilian working for the Coast Guard you do not need to apply for an additional Background Check. You will be vetted through the Coast Guard system by CWO2 Polkowski.
  3. If you are non-Coast Guard Active Duty, you are required to provide proof of your current security clearance or National Agency Check that is to be emailed by your Command Security Officer (CSO)/ Security Office to CWO2 Polkowski at
  4. If you are non-Coast Guard civilian who has a current security clearance or National Agency check, you are required to provide proof of your current security clearance or National Agency Check that is to be emailed by your Command Security Officer (CSO)/ Security Office to CWO2 Polkowski at
  5. All civilians in the families who are 18 years or older and do not have a security clearance or a National Agency Check are required to be vetted through Mind Your Business, the third party vendor hired by the Coast Guard Academy for the vetting process.

After you complete your application, please e-mail the Sponsor Family Program Coordinator at In your e-mail, you must include the e-mail address and phone number of every adult living in the home. The Sponsor Family Coordinator will then initiate the background check process and you will receive an email with further instructions.

Important things to note:

There is a Sponsor Family Training that is a one-hour training which we ask sponsors to attend once every four years. This training is designed to give you an overview of the program, what is expected of you as a sponsor, and what you can expect from your cadets. This training will also help familiarize you with the cadet regulations onboard CGA. You will be notified via e-mail once the training is scheduled.

The matching process of swabs to families will occur during July and August. Please bear with us and remain flexible through this process. There will be a meet and greet scheduled on Campus, typically in late August. This will give families an opportunity to formally meet their cadet if they have not already done so. Details on this will also be via email.

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