by Blake Gorman ’13, Eagle Columnist
I see a lot of new boys come into the Corps of Cadets throughout the year. Just last year I was one of the new boys that came in the middle of the year. I enrolled at MMA right after the Christmas break. A lot of cadets say that the cadets that come in the middle of the year miss all of the hard times, but that is not always the case.
It can be harder to transfer schools, especially socially, because everyone has already established friends from the beginning of the year. Many cadets are reluctant to willingly accept the “new boy” into their social circle. I personally have experienced being the “new kid” at other schools and at other public schools – it can be difficult to make friends. I only had hours a day to get to know those individuals, but at MMA you have the experience of living here, so you get to know your fellow MMA cadets quite well.
Another reason it is tough being a mid-year student is making huge adjustments. The pressure of adapting to the cadet life on campus can be very tough overall. It can be even tougher if you are the only one learning the ropes while everyone else already knows how things go. But there will always be someone there to help you out, like your leaders. At the same time, many of the leaders should remember that the new boys are learning all of these things and, just as it is at the beginning of the year, we have to be patient with them.
Cadets that come in the middle of the year may sometimes be instantly assumed as ‘bad kids’ – maybe there is a reason why they were sent at MMA halfway through the year. We have seen that is not always the case. There are a number of reasons students enroll halfway through the year. It could have been from bad grades, to learn time management, or just wanted to pursue a serious career in the military. All in all, cadets that show up in the middle of the year aren’t always the “bad kids.” One senior I spoke with said, “There is no such thing as a bad kid. There are just good kids that have made bad decisions or has been living in a bad environment.” Let’s do our best to welcome these boys into the Corps of Cadets and help them along in their new journey.
Blake Gorman is a senior cadet from Wentzville, Mo. He plans to attend North Georgia College and State University with the intention of joining its Corps of Cadets.