USCG Diversity Initiative

A new Coast Guard initiative launched in September charges every service member with the responsibility for attracting and retaining a diverse workforce for the Coast Guard that better reflects the diverse fabric of American society.

The new Diversity Strategic Plan outlines strategic goals every Coast Guard member should strive to support. The goals address leadership accountability, improved communications, expanded outreach to underrepresented populations, equitable hiring practices, and training and education for service members to underscore the value of diversity within the Coast Guard’s workforce.

“Diversity isn’t a program or policy - it is a state of being,” said Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Thad Allen. “My intent is to define an ambitious pathway for change in our efforts to make the Coast Guard workforce reflective of American society.”

As part of the service’s efforts to diversify its workforce, the Coast Guard has launched the “Born Ready” recruiting campaign in strategic markets critical to the service’s recruiting mission. The Born Ready campaign includes advertisements developed to attract women and Hispanic recruits in addition to male applicants.

The Coast Guard also recently developed a partnership with Norfolk State University, Norfolk, Va. and North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University, Greensboro N.C., to offer scholarships and internships to minorities. This partnership will be a model for other Coast Guard higher education initiatives with historically black colleges and universities, Hispanic serving institutions, and tribal colleges and universities.

Internships, e-mentorning, and academic assistance through staff visits were the topics of discussion during a recent meeting between Rear Adm. Cynthia Coogan, the Coast Guard’s assistant commandant for intelligence and criminal investigations and Lincoln University President, Dr. Carolyn Mahoney at the university’s campus in Jefferson City, Miss. “Our visit to the Lincoln University was a great success,” said Coogan in a recent blog post. “We look forward to a long and mutually beneficial partnership.”

For more information on the Coast Guard’s diversity initiatives, visit: