FORT KNOX, Ky. – Cadets of 8th Regiment, Advanced Camp (CLC), reflected on their experiences during Cadet Summer Training (CST) as they waited in line to turn-in their equipment at the Central Issue Facility (CIF), Harmon Hall Aug. 1.
At the CIF, Cadets return all equipment they were supplied upon arrival at Fort Knox.
Waiting for his turn to return his equipment, Cdt. Drew Lawrence, George Washington University, talked about his time at CST.
“I’m thinking about the great experience I’ve had here at Advanced Camp,” Lawrence stated. “I’ve enjoyed seeing the diversity of the Army; we meet people from many different backgrounds. There were many prior service Cadets in my platoon; people that are married and have kids. It’s nice to see the Army is made up of people with aspirations and families.”
Cdt. Alec Correa, California State University, Fullerton, also found meeting his peers an important aspect of his time in CST.
“Meeting my peers and realizing the small world the Army is has been the most valuable part of this experience,” Correa said. “You meet a lot of people whose knowledge you will benefit from and work with in your career. Because of this, many cadre have been stressing responsibility and accountability in maintaining these relationships.”
Cdt. Matthew Buyer, The Citadel, said he looking forward to returning home and reuniting with family and friends.
“I’m feeling relief. It feels good to go through the last step of returning my gear,” said Buyer. “I’m also thinking about returning home; seeing friends and family.”
Expressing similar sentiments as Buyer, Correa had this to say.
“It feels great to go through this because we get our flight itineraries. It’s one step closer to home, graduation and commission. It’s exciting,” he shared.
CST has given the Cadets the opportunity to grow in ways that will help them advance in and outside of the Army. For Buyer, he said CST has helped him grow as a leader, something he believes will be valuable.
“The leadership opportunities such as being platoon leader, squad leader or team leader of my peers has helped me grow into my leadership style and I think that’s key for the future,” he said.
The Cadets were able to learn and grow with the assistance of the cadre who are there to make a lessons out of their experiences.
Cdt. Brittany Lake, New Mexico Military Institute, had this to say about the cadre.
“My cadre are beyond the best. They’re there for you, they actually care and are striving to push us forward,” she said.
Buyer also said the cadre were helpful.
“Honestly, the observer, trainer, mentor’s I had were fantastic,” he added. “They were there all the time, with us in the field and they gave us a lot of feedback, allowing us to grow where we needed to.”
With these lessons in mind, the 8th Regiment Cadets will graduate Saturday, Aug. 6, ready to take on their next challenge.