DVIDS – News – Service Beyond Borders: U.S. Merchant Marine Academy cadets explore opportunities with U.S. Coast Guard Forces Micronesia/Sector Guam
When it comes to broadening horizons and shattering boundaries, U.S. Merchant Marine Academy (USMMA) cadets Janae Teria of Guam and Jonah Russo of North Carolina are stepping up to the plate. As part of a two-week summer internship with the U.S. Coast Guard Forces Micronesia/Sector Guam, they are redefining what it means to serve in the modern era.
“Growing up, I always admired the structure and camaraderie of the military, a virtue my father deeply cherished,” Russo reflects. “My time at the Coast Guard deepened that admiration and showed me how it operates on a practical level.”
Teria, on the other hand, had different motivations for joining the USMMA. As an aspiring soccer player, she saw an opportunity to merge her love for the sport with an intense academic regimen. “At USMMA, I found the perfect blend of my passion for sports and the desire to serve my nation. The Coast Guard internship was a revelation – it’s astounding how many paths I can take within maritime service,” Teria says.
The shared experiences of Russo and Teria have broadened their perspectives and shone a light on the myriad opportunities within the U.S. military. As Capt. Nick Simmons, commander of U.S. Coast Guard Forces Micronesia/Sector Guam, remarks, “The dedication, intellect, and integrity displayed by Jonah and Janae reflect the high caliber of training and education the USMMA provides. They’ve significantly impacted our unit, and we are confident that they, and others like them, will continue to advance the U.S. military into a promising future.”
The internship also exemplifies the rise of women in military service. Teria’s success at the USMMA and her impactful performance at the Coast Guard internship signifies the strides toward gender inclusivity in the armed services. “As a woman in a traditionally male-dominated field, I feel empowered to perform at my best. Every opportunity I have had, including this internship, is a step towards challenging the status quo,” Teria adds.
The USMMA, located in Kings Point, New York, is known for its rigorous academic program. It requires more credit hours for a baccalaureate degree than any other federal service academy and augments its curriculum with the unique Sea Year experience. “The academic rigor is certainly intense, but the real-world experiences that USMMA offers, like the Sea Year, make it all worth it,” Russo explains. “We’re not just studying in a classroom; we’re sailing to ports around the world.”
Upon graduation, USMMA graduates can serve in the U.S. maritime industry, the nation’s Armed Forces, or as officers in any reserve unit of the Armed Forces. Teria and Russo, with their impressive work ethic and dedication will excel in any of these roles. Both enjoyed their opportunities to see the response ashore world, prevention activities and shipboard inspections, maritime law enforcement, and time underway with the Fast Response Cutters.
U.S. Coast Guard Forces Micronesia/Sector Guam, where the two cadets spent their transformative internship, remains a pillar of maritime safety, security, and stewardship in the Oceania region. “Our work here in the Pacific is crucial,” Capt. Simmons adds. “We need leaders like Janae and Jonah who understand the mission and bring fresh perspectives and innovative solutions.”
The path Russo and Teria have embarked upon illuminates the critical role of service academies like the USMMA in preparing future leaders. These institutions ensure a vibrant merchant fleet and a secure transportation industry, vital for economic and national security. “In the end, it all comes down to service,” Russo concludes. “Service to our nation, service to our global community, and service to each other.” Indeed, their journey illustrates that the academy’s ethos – “Acta Non Verba” – is alive and well.
|Date Posted:||08.26.2023 22:51|
|Location:||SANTA RITA, GU|
This work, Service Beyond Borders: U.S. Merchant Marine Academy cadets explore opportunities with U.S. Coast Guard Forces Micronesia/Sector Guam, by CWO2 Sara Muir, identified by DVIDS, must comply with the restrictions shown on https://www.dvidshub.net/about/copyright.