Careers after graduation

Discussion in 'Coast Guard Academy - USCGA' started by jociemiller, Nov 5, 2017.

  1. jociemiller

    jociemiller Member

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    I plan on applying to the CGA for the class of 2023. From what I understand, there are 3 main career paths after graduation from the academy - being aboard a cutter, being ashore, and aviation. At graduation, do you get to pick which path you take or is it assigned to you by major, or how does it work? Thank you so much! :)
     
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  2. davejean90

    davejean90 Member

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  3. Capt MJ

    Capt MJ 10-Year Member

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    If your screen name is anything like your real name, I suggest changing it to protect your privacy. This is an anonymous advice forum, and there is no need for you to put too much personal identifying info out there. Down the road, if you are a successful appointee, no doubt you will be connecting on other social media better suited for personal info. You can contact a mod for help with that.

    And, if you haven’t already, read every page, link and dropdown on the USCGA.edu website, and browse the USCGA and DODMERB forums, and the Acronyms thread in Community Info. Be open-minded about other SAs, services and paths to an officer commission. Plans B and C are worth thinking about.

    Search on “chance me” and “stats” threads for all SA forums to get a feel for the depth and breadth of the candidate pool.

    Take note of mentions of SA summer programs before before your senior HS year, and Boys’ State and Girls’ State.

    USCGA doesn’t require nominations. The other 4 Federal SAs do. Read up on the Nominations forum and search your senators’ and MOC elected representative SA nomination website pages.

    Have fun!
     
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  4. AuxNoob

    AuxNoob CGA Admissions Partner 5-Year Member

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    As far as your question as to how you end up in one of these three areas, there are several factors. In the fall of your senior year you fill out a dream sheet as to your preferences, which you rank according to what you want to do in your career. Your rank on graduation (composed of academic, athletic and military grading (no I don't know how that works)) determines how you do on your dream sheet. Most of the cadets in my son's class got something close to what they wanted. My son fell in the middle of the class, and wanted a posting in a particular area and underway. It turned out the cutter he listed as number one on his list is where he went. Other graduates have posted on here particularly about getting into flight school.
     
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  5. trackandfield08

    trackandfield08 USCGA 2014 10-Year Member

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    I can answer how it works. Unless it's changed recently, your class rank is 60% of your academic performance, 25% military performance, and 15% physical fitness. Your academic score comes from your academic GPA, military performance is determined by your Cadet Evaluation Reports scores (cadets receive a CER each semester and then one in the summer), and your physical fitness is determined by your Physical Fitness Exam scores (taken twice a year, August and January). Overall, where your assigned is based on 1) Your Class Rank and 2) Location/Unit Popularity. For example, for my class (2014), some of the lowest ranking people were assigned to Hawaii and the number two cadet and anchor (last in the class) cadet were assigned to Alaska. Other years, the reverse is the same. Sometimes, Virginia is popular because there are a lot of vessels concentrated there and its easier to get assigned with your future spouse (co-locate) or friends (unofficial term "bro-locate").

    Most people, approximately 85%, will go to a cutter. You will not get an ashore billet unless you're in the top 30 - more than likely the top 15 - of the class. Ashore billets make up about 5% of a class leaving 10% to aviation. For aviation, class rank matters but not as much as for ashore or a cutter. That's because flight school requires you to submit your class rank, take a written exam, interview with a flight board, and pass a flight physical. There have been applicants who graduated at the top of their class that did not receive orders to flight school as well as applicants towards the bottom of the class who did. Your major does not matter other than Engineers are encouraged to go afloat as Engineering Officers in Training (EOITs). However, engineers can also choose to be Deck Watch Officers (navigation/ship driving) and non-engineering majors can be EOITs.
     
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  6. lyacswimmer

    lyacswimmer Member

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    Thank you for all the information. If someone with an engineering major wanted to pursue aviation, would he or she be at a disadvantage then?
     
  7. trackandfield08

    trackandfield08 USCGA 2014 10-Year Member

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    Absolutely not, engineers have just as much of an opportunity to be accepted to flight school as non-engineering majors. What I meant to say is that if an engineering major is pursuing an afloat assignment after graduation, they would be encouraged to put in for EOIT billets.
     
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  8. AuxNoob

    AuxNoob CGA Admissions Partner 5-Year Member

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    I was hoping T&F08 would comment on this. To add an example, the Class of 2017 had 195 graduates. Thirteen went to flight school. Majors: 2 Marine Env Sci , 2 CivE, 2 OpResearch, 6 MechE, 1 Management.
     
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