Wisconsin Cadets Train at Air National Guard Base
One hundred cadets from across the Wisconsin Wing devoted a weekend to training in leadership and U.S. Air Force-style drill and ceremony while receiving a crash course in opportunities available to them in fields like aerospace engineering, computer science, defense, and aviation.
The weekend Airman Training School at Volk Field Air National Guard Base provided them with a deeper look at the program’s demands and enabled them to return to their home squadrons better prepared to learn to lead.
Cadet Chief Master Sgt. Lily Schaefer of the Stevens Point Composite Squadron served on the cadet leadership staff for the activity.
“When I began in Civil Air Patrol I was nervous about everything — even the fit of my uniform. It seemed huge and awkward, much like all the tasks ahead of me.
“But I looked up to those ahead of me and saw what opportunities they had, and I admired their leadership skills, and I wanted that. So I stuck with it because of their example and encouragement,” Schaefer said.
“Now, 18 months later, I’m in leadership myself, and it feels really amazing to have that opportunity, to build my confidence, and to learn to lead.”
Cadet Chief Master Sgt. Hayden Elwood, also a Stevens Point squadron member, was one of the cadet leaders as well. Youth interested in CAP should “visit your local squadron and see what Civil Air Patrol is about,” Elwood said.
“I think you’ll be really, really surprised to find out how much you can do, what you can achieve. It’s a really empowering program with a ton of amazing opportunities for youth that you can’t get anywhere else,” he said.