Thanks, Sgiobair. I’ll check out the local meetings in this area; Probably my biggest concern is that as a mariner working day for day and missing at least half of everything in the home life, there is precious little time left for events on your off time. Like: It’s Saturday–do I take my car to the car show, go to my kid’s soccer game, or go to the CG Auxiliary training/patrol/whatever…
[QUOTE=SgiobairOg;166588]I used to be before I joined the service.
Depending on what you want out of it it is a great organization with a good mission.
You get lots of opportunities to go attend training on various skills and topics; you can learn boating safety instruction, vessel examiner, port security, you can even get trained as a Coast Guard cook. You also have plenty of opportunities to take on leadership roles which can help pad out your resume. Before I left I was on the national staff.
On the operational side it really depends on what Flotilla you’re in. Some Flotillas in Alaska are USCG trained and operate USCG small boats, there are Flotillas in New York that have their own patrol boats continually manned, then there are flotillas where there’s one old guy with a boat and he only goes on patrol once a month. Operational qualifications follow the Coast Guard system for boat crew and coxswains, you can get some very solid training that will help your mariner career. You can also get several different levels of radio qualifications.
I’d say Quimby’s advice is best, check out your local Flotilla, go sit in on some meetings, see what they do and how they can benefit you/benefit from you. I enjoyed it all but wished I had been able to get on the water more. I wasn’t a working mariner at the time though.[/QUOTE]