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Home / Cadet Blogs / The Cadet Experience

How to be Successful at the Coast Guard Academy

Jonah Lee - 2025

Because of how much structure there is in your schedule at the Coast Guard Academy, life for me at the Academy is just like high school…on steroids! Since you are a full-time college student, while also being a full-time member of the military, also most likely an athlete or musician of some sort, also someone […]

Post-Swab Summer Transition

Gina Sobinovsky - 2026

As I made the transition from Swab Summer to the academic year, I realized that I needed to undergo a very significant mental shift of focus in order to be successful in a new environment. There was no longer a need to be on hyper alert to external stimuli like yelling from the cadre – […]

Furling

Christian Salayon - 2026

Reminiscing on my time as a swab, there is one instant I will never forget. During my time on Barque Eagle (a three-masted training ship), I was given one of the coolest opportunities and experiences of my life. For context, during our weeklong voyage from New London, CT to New York, the swabs including myself […]

Your Mindset in Swab Summer is Key!

Ethan Easley

Months before I reported to the Academy, I thought I had a clear understanding and image in my head of what Swab Summer was going to be like. I thought I knew how it was going to feel physically, mentally, and spiritually. Bad news though … I was wrong. Naturally, I was a ball of […]

Tips for Swab Summer

Ryan Condon - 2026

I feel like a lot of incoming swabs have a lot of questions that may not always be answered or can be difficult to find an answer to. Luckily, I have an older brother who went through the Academy and was able to answer all my questions. However, I recognize that not everyone has that […]

Swabs and Sailing – My Cadre Summer

2/c Lauren O'Neill

Cadre Summer was a really exciting time for my class, marking the transition from being a follower and underclassman to a leader. Our summer started out with MCTC, Mid-grade Cadet Training Course, where we got to work with our cadre sections, learning about leadership theories as we developed our own leadership styles. We also had […]

Cadre Season is Coming up!

Lucas Tabit

All the 3/c are talking about which cadre they want to be now that cadre summer is slowly approaching. Whether they want to be the cadre who scream their heads off in Chase Hall at Swabs, or waterfront cadre who get to sail around all day, or AIM cadre who get to boss around a […]

Swab Summer/AIM Tips

Leah Balser

If you are reading this, you are either considering or taking part in Swab Summer or the Academy Introduction Mission (AIM). As someone who has done both, I will give you some tips to help you be successful during your time at the Academy. For starters, I would recommend drinking a lot of water. Summers […]

My 3/c Summer Experience

Kai Wismar

One of the best parts of CGA for me so far was going to CG units 3/c summer. My summer was interesting because I was originally supposed to go on Eagle, but that changed because of Covid; I went to Cape Disappointment in WA and, instead of Eagle, I had the Stratton (WMSL) in Alameda, […]

3/c Summer Experience

Emily Morin

Station New Haven: I loved my time at Station New Haven. There were 4 of us at the station and we stayed for 4 weeks at Sector Long Island Sound right next door. Each day, we would spend our time helping out the crew, going underway on vessel boardings/boat checks, and working on qualifications. I […]

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