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cadet blogs

More Opportunities Than Time

(Choosing the Coast Guard Academy, Extracurricular Activities and Faith-Based Involvement, Class of 2020) Permanent link
Swift Photo Hey y’all! I’m Delaney Swift, a fourth class (third class, finally!) here at the good old CGA. I was born and raised in Portales, New Mexico – a little rural land-locked farm and ranch town. Coming to Connecticut has been a bit of a shock to the system for me. I traded soil, sun, big skies, and the high plains for beautiful trees and a river in my back yard. That definitely has its perks! Though my heart will always be in New Mexico, it doesn’t have a whole lot of coast to guard.

 

I have two younger brothers, Jack (15) and Noah (12), who (despite always being up to no good) are pretty much my best friends. I’m a very family-centric person, which I thought would be a challenge for me in coming to the Academy, but it turns out that my family just got bigger – it now includes a whole bunch of cadets! As a fourth class, my main hobbies were keeping my eyes in the boat, bussing around campus, and squaring my corners, but really, the highlights of my day are all the extracurricular activities offered here. As a third class, life has gotten so much better; I now spend my time working in the major I love, seeing my friends at Glee, theater, and ballroom dance, and looking out for 4/c! Growing up in a small town meant that things to do were always hard to come by, but there’s never a dull moment at the Academy – there’s always shenanigans of some sort afoot, just like home! You can never tell what the future will bring at this school – you’ll literally have more opportunities than you have time for. One thing I can tell, though, is that my final three years here are going to be the adventure of a lifetime. If you ever have any questions, or just want to talk to a cadet, shoot me an email at Delaney.L.Swift@uscga.edu.

 

More about Delaney.

 

Singing at the Academy

(Extracurricular Activities and Faith-Based Involvement, Just for Fun, Class of 2018) Permanent link
Eshleman Photo I love the fall. I love the excitement of going back to school, the leaves changing color in Connecticut, and the transition into colder weather. My favorite thing about autumn though, is getting back into singing after being away from the group for the summer. As my profile says, I am involved in multiple singing groups at the Coast Guard Academy. One of these is called Fairwinds, which is a group of 12 girls that practice weekly and do acapella songs. Each year we strive to learn new music. We vary from Michael Jackson to doo wop to Johnny Cash. We then get to perform at various local restaurants, ceremonies, banquets, and more. Traveling with a small group of people (we also commonly perform with the guys’ group the Idlers as well) really creates a close-knit circle. This niche I have found at CGA has made the school feel like home. It gives me something to look forward to every week when we get to sing for an hour or two. It takes my mind off any anxieties I may be having about tests, military inspections, etc., AND the best part is that you get to travel. What young person doesn’t want that? This year is my last year in Fairwinds before graduating, and I intend to make it as great of a time as possible.

 

More about Hannah.

 

Back to School and After-School Activities

(Extracurricular Activities and Faith-Based Involvement, Just for Fun, Class of 2018) Permanent link
Hosley Photo I can’t believe this is my first blog back at school for my last year at the Academy! It’s crazy how time flies! So here we are back at school for another exciting and challenging year at the CGA. I had heard that some people were interested in some of my other extracurricular activities here at school (which are a blast!), so here is a little bit about what the CGA has to offer outside of everyday cadet life.

 

This semester, I happen to be the Executive Officer of Golf Company. It is an honor to be in charge (along with my Company Commander) of leading and guiding a company of 124 other cadets. On top of being XO, I am also captain of the varsity women’s lacrosse team. As a lacrosse player and a captain, I am very busy organizing team events, practices, and team bonding time. As a varsity athlete much of my time is spent at practice every afternoon and at away games on the weekends. Some of our games are around two hours away but the time spent with my team on the bus is priceless. It is an amazing and humbling opportunity to be able to test out my leadership skills while playing the sport that I love.

 

When I’m not playing lacrosse or working on company logistics, you can find me at Yoga Club, Women’s Leadership Council, with the Fellowship of Christian Athletes organization (FCA), or Asian Pacific American Council (APAC). I know it probably seems like it is impossible for me to do all of these things, and sometimes it seems like it is, but the beauty of being here at the CGA is that everyone understands the limits on our time and thus clubs are very flexible with scheduled events (unlike varsity sports obligations which are mandatory). When the clubs are hosting big events, club members can sign up to attend if their schedule allows. For Yoga Club, we have the unique opportunity to travel off-base to Mystic Yoga Shala for hot yoga once a week. If I’m too busy with homework I’ll skip out on yoga, but otherwise the classes are a great stress reliever and a hard workout. For Women’s Leadership Council, we do a mentoring program and have other fun events that I choose to attend based on whether or not my schedule allows. FCA is great also because we have lunch excusals every couple of weeks, so it doesn’t take any time out of my day, but instead I get to eat lunch with my fellow classmates and athletes. It is a great time to relax, reflect, and discuss our faith. Lastly, being a part of APAC is really fun as well! The council usually does big events with delicious food, like Dim Sum Sundays at a local restaurant. Overall, the Academy has a ton of unique and fun extracurricular activities to offer and I only do just a few. If you have any other specific questions, please don’t hesitate to ask! Cecelia.K.Hosley@uscga.edu

 

More about Cece.

 

All for Clubs and Clubs for All

(Extracurricular Activities and Faith-Based Involvement, Just for Fun, Class of 2019) Permanent link
Friedman Photo The summer is starting to wind down and Cadets are getting ready to head back to the Academy for the start of the academic year. The week before classes start is Cadet Administrative Processing or CAP week, when cadets set up their class schedules, get books, move into their new rooms, take the PFE, and any other tasks the Academy needs us to complete before the school year starts. As part of CAP week, there’s the annual Cadet Activities Fair when the whole corps goes down to lower field for a cook-out lunch and clubs set up tables to let everyone learn more about the club and sign up if they’re interested. I’m in Women’s Leadership Council, Culinary Club, Diversity Peer Educators, Cadet Activities Council, Class of 2019 Formal Committee, (obviously) Blog Club and others I’m forgetting right now.

 

One of the other clubs that I’m in is the Women’s Rugby Team. We’re a club sport because we compete under USA Rugby instead of the NCAA. We’re a division II team and went to the final four last season. It may sound intimidating, like you have to have played since you were six years old to be on the team, but this is the farthest thing from the truth. Anyone who wants to play is welcome. In high school, I played volleyball and swam but I decided to change it up when I got to the Academy so I started playing rugby and I love it. The team is super close and welcoming. We practice Monday through Thursday during sports period and lift in the morning before the military training period on Tuesdays and Thursdays. We have our games on Saturday mornings at a field the Coast Guard Foundation owns off base. After our games we have a cook out with the other team and get back to the Academy shortly after liberty is granted. It’s a great way to get off base, meet new people, and create a positive representation of the Coast Guard for people who may not know a lot about our service.

 

I am also the president of the Jewish Hillel on campus. The club has lunch together every other week and the wardroom does a great job of catering it. They make challah, matzah ball soup, and other traditional foods. The lunches and club is not just for Jewish cadets, most of the club members are not Jewish; they come to learn more about Jewish heritage and their shipmates who are Jewish. In addition to the lunches we organize outreach events. Last semester alone, we hosted a visit from members of the Israeli Defense forces; a Passover Seder; a Holocaust remembrance lunch, which over 100 cadets attended; and more.

 

While the Academy is a very stringent and regulated place, there is also the opportunity to express yourself and explore your interests. You just have to take the initiative to join the club related to your interests, or create it yourself. Last year alone the Diversity Peer Educators, German American Council, Archery Club, and Field Hockey Team were created.

 

If you have any questions, about clubs or anything else, feel free to email me at Jill.M.Friedman@uscga.edu.

 

More about Jill.

 

Florida to Haiti

(Extracurricular Activities and Faith-Based Involvement, Class of 2017) Permanent link
Culp Photo A little bit delayed, but… I got my billet, and I am going to flight school! I am still dumbfounded at this blessing, but I just cannot wait to see what the next couple of years in flight training has in store for me! Plus there are 12 other fantastic classmates of mine going, so it is going to be a wonderful community of students. Praise the Lord!

 

The whole thing was made even more exciting, though, by an experience that began less than 48 hours after I received my billet. I found myself boarding a plane to spend my spring break on a mission trip in Haiti with some awesome friends from the Academy. We travelled into a mountain village called Cap Rouge, and spent a week preparing the organization’s new missions house, helping the locals with their housework and gardening, immersing ourselves in the Haitian Creole culture, and learning to serve God in a completely new environment.

 

Going to Haiti changed my perspective on serving the Lord in incredible ways. I realized that my view of God’s purpose for the gifts and skills with which He has blessed me was a sort of tunnel vision; there are so many other ways that God could use me to serve Him. I wish every college senior could experience something like this, just to see what it means to be a disciple of God and where we fit in that equation.

 

I think of the end of the gospel of Matthew, where Jesus tasks the apostles with the Great Commission: “Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” (Matt. 28:19-20) I absolutely cannot wait for the earthly career I will have in the military, and learning to be an aviator. But, that gospel task is my true career, and who knows how God will shape that one?

 

I am forever thankful for my time in Haiti…a future in service to the Lord is much, much wider than what I envisioned on stage with my first assignment in hand. It’s amazing to watch your understanding of God’s Kingdom expand in one short week.

 

More about Abby.