"Seaing" Their Future

Cadets at Grad

Graduates with MMA's Simmons, Leading Cadet DaSilva, and NSCC's McLoughlin front and center.

The U.S. Naval Sea Cadet Corps (NSCC) is the officially supported youth program of both the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Coast Guard, providing compelling, life-changing programs that instill the values of teamwork, discipline, camaraderie, and service. If that sounds familiar, then it will come as no surprise that last weekend, at the NSCC's Gosnold Division's Graduation Ceremony at Joint Base Cape Cod (above), an agreement was signed to undertake a strategic partnership with the Academy in order to ensure the future of a relationship that for years has already been paying huge dividends for both institutions.

The Sea Cadet Program offers young people ages 11-18 the opportunity to wear the U.S. Navy's uniform while participating in unique and truly outstanding training opportunities aboard military ships and shore stations. With 13,500 cadets across more than 397 units throughout the US and territories, the Gosnold Division currently enrolls some 40 cadets from the local area. Sea Cadets are mature, driven, and talented future leaders who make good life decisions while holding themselves to a high standard of integrity. In short, character matters in an environment where teenagers share life goals, interests, and most importantly, values. Many of these transformational experiences have taken place on the MMA campus where the Division trains.

Jim McLoughlin and Elizabeth Simmons make it official

The MMA journey can be unbelievably challenging. Many Gosnold cadets who have gone on to graduate from MMA attribute the Sea Cadet program with skill development in time management, leadership, teamwork, and of course making amazing friends, all great preparation for their years on Taylor's Point!  And for young people like the Gosnold Division's incoming Leading Cadet, Vicky DaSilva from nearby Dartmouth, MA, attending MMA is a very real possibility. As a proven leader, she'd be in good company...two of the past four Regimental Commanders have come from there. Mikayla Correia '18, the second female in Academy history to hold the position, and this year's top cadet, Dominic Vaccari '21. According to MMA's VP of External Affairs Elizabeth Simmons, "The leadership and life skills learned through Sea Cadets are a natural attraction to MMA's regimented lifestyle, while the academic STEM focused programs, career placement, and camaraderie are what makes them graduates."

NSCC Commander McLoughlin is quick to point out all of the assistance that the Academy has provided over the years. From the President's Office to Facilities, from Camps and Conferences to Chartwell's Food Service, Marine Operations to the TS Kennedy's crew, the list of names of those who've been integral to this success reads like an Academy Who's Who. "There has been a Sea Cadet unit on campus since 1979, and Gosnold Division specifically, since 1994," he says. "Since that time, we have enjoyed a very successful relationship with the Academy. The signing of this Memorandum of Understanding and Strategic Partnership is the piece de resistance, the culmination of that long relationship."

A win - win for all involved, there is no doubt that this mutually beneficial partnership will continue to flourish in the years to come.