Twins Join Navy After Sea Cadets Tour
Like many High School seniors, fraternal twins Sean and Nick Coe are looking toward the future, as they decide what path their life might next take.
After a brief conversation with their father, a retired U.S. Army staff sergeant, the boys were offered two possible avenues; either college or the military.
The decision, although not taken lightly, was an easy one. The boys decided to follow in their father’s footsteps and enlist in the nation’s armed forces. However, unlike their father, Donald Coe, Sean and Nick have decided to serve their nation through enlisting in the Navy.
Why, you may ask? The United States Naval Sea Cadet Corps (USNSCC).
According to the Sea Cadets website, the USNSCC is a U.S. Navy-sponsored youth leadership organization whose mission is to build leaders of character by offering America’s young men and women hands on and experiential training in partnership with the Navy and its sister services in order to instill the highest ideals of honor, respect, commitment and service.
The organization also actively trains its participants in the customs and courtesies of the Navy along with basic seamanship, watch standing protocol and fitness standards.
The Coe brothers were initially inspired to join the Sea Cadets after not being able to find a Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (JROTC) detachment at their school or in their area. After some brief research the boys found a local Sea Cadet unit and joined during their freshman year of high school.
“At first I wasn’t really sure about it, but I’ve been thinking about a military career since I was a kid and I wanted to further that. We didn’t have any JROTC programs where we live so I ended up joining Sea Cadets,” said Nick. “I joined the program and started getting further and further involved, and I used that experience to get myself ready for what I’m about to go through.”
Although the brothers had considered a career in the military, graduation was a far-off prospect when they first joined the Sea Cadets, as was the decision on what avenue to take after high school. As decision time came closer, the Coe brothers realized the value of their time in the Sea Cadets.
“Being in the sea cadets was a lot of fun. I got to meet a lot of great people, had a lot of great experiences and learned a lot. It ultimately prepared me for the Navy,” said Sean. “Honestly, when others were doing nothing to prepare for the Navy, I was in the Sea Cadets learning ranks, general orders, cadences and how to stay in shape. If you want to join the Navy, you want to do the Sea Cadets. It gets you ready for the whole thing.”
Basic acclimation to the Navy isn’t the only benefit that participation in the Sea Cadets provides. Cadets who enlist in the armed services are often eligible for military advanced pay grade programs, which can be up to two pay grades in some services. The Sea Cadets program has also had a positive impact on some prospective special programs applicants with more than 10 percent of the midshipmen at the U.S. Naval Academy being former Sea Cadets.
As the boys entered their junior year of high school, the increasing responsibilities of becoming an adult cut their Sea Cadet careers short.
“After getting jobs we realized we had too much stuff on our plates so we realized we had to leave,” said Sean. Nick continued on to say. “I needed to get a job to afford my first car. Nothing was given to us, it was earned.”
Despite leaving the cadets, the two years the brothers spent in the program left a lasting impression. The exposure to possible Navy careers actually influenced Nick to pursue a welding program while he was still in high school.
“At first I wanted to join the Army and I wanted to go infantry. I didn’t really know what I wanted to do, I just wanted to be on the front lines like my father was,” said Nick. “I ended up joining the Navy after I found out about the trades programs while I was in Sea Cadets. That made me want to go to a school for welding because I thought it was so interesting. Then I found out the Navy had Hull Technician, [which features welding as a fundamental skill] and I knew that’s what I wanted to do.”
Thanks, in part to the Sea Cadets, Nick will now be able to serve his nation as a Hull Technician while pursuing a career he was originally exposed to because of his time as a Sea Cadet. Sean will be pursuing a career in law enforcement, serving as a Master-at-Arms where he hopes to be able to join a K-9 training unit.
Navy Recruiting Command consists of a command headquarters, three Navy Recruiting Regions, and 26 Navy Talent Acquisition Groups that serve more than 1,000 recruiting stations across the world. Their combined goal is to attract the highest quality candidates to assure the ongoing success of America’s Navy.