Serving the future leaders of the Coast Guard is a key initiative for the Foundation. That's why we donate more than $1 million to the Coast Guard Academy annually in support of academic enrichment, leadership development programs and athletics. The Academy is a top-tier educational institution, and the Foundation's robust support allows it to maintain its competitive edge when recruiting students.
Recent Foundation initiatives at the Academy include bolstering its Leadership and Ethics programs, which helped provide invaluable instruction to cadets that otherwise would not have been possible.
Since 2008, the Foundation has supported more than $325,000 in leadership and ethics curriculum, thanks to several generous corporate donors, BAE Systems, SAIC and Lockheed Martin.
The grants allowed the Academy to hire a faculty member who is an expert in ethics for the 2009-2010 academic year. Dr. Christopher Hudspeth, a post-doctoral fellow in ethics and leadership, developed innovative ways of teaching these vital subjects to cadets, who are the future officer corps.
In addition to hiring Dr. Hudspeth, the grants were used to start the Center for Teaching, a new effort that was established to invest in the leadership development of faculty members. The Academy also was able to fund an off-site retreat for its Chaplains and Company Chiefs to prepare instructions for incoming cadet classes.
Additional programs made possible by these gifts included: leadership training for third-class cadets onboard the USCGC Eagle during their summer cruise; mentoring programs at the Academy; as well as improved assessments of second-class cadets' experience in the Coastal Sail Training program.
Coast Guard Academy cadets hone their seamanship skills on the Thames River in New London, Conn. The Foundation is in the final stages of raising money to build eight brand new sailboats for the Academy.
"These grants have allowed us to meet our goal of integrating leadership and character development throughout the Academy. Without these generous and thoughtful donors we would not be as far along in this initiative. It gives us a margin of excellence that really makes a difference in the lives of Coast Guard leaders," former Superintendent Admiral J. Scott Burhoe said.
Another key leadership initiative the Foundation has sponsored is replacing the Academy's sail training fleet. The Leadership 44 program, which is a partnership between the Foundation, the Academy's Alumni Association and Parents Association, will replace the aging fleet of sailboats that Academy currently uses for training with eight brand new boats.
The Academy uses the sailboats to teach cadets seamanship and crucial leadership skills. Many cadets have cited the sail training program as the highlight of their academic career. Currently, the limited number of boats prevents all cadets from participating in the program. The Leadership 44 program will fix that, making it so every cadet joins in this invaluable experience.