Preparing for Recruit Training
We have a lot of new recruits who want to go to Recruit Training (RT). Here are some things you need to know and to work on to show up on your first day of RT well prepared:
1. All cadets are required to complete the prerequisite online and in-person training (Recruit Orientation) before they can attend recruit training. This takes 2-3 months.
2. Study and learn the Navy/NSCC Rates (enlisted) and Ranks (Officers). Know what to call them, how to identify them.
3. Learn the proper responses and when to say things like:
a. “Yes Sir”, “No Sir”, “Yes Ma’am”, “No Ma’am” (when answering a yes/no question asked by an officer.)
b. “Aye-Aye” (When you are given an order, you say Aye-Aye to indicate you understand and that you will do it.)
c. “No excuse, Sir/Ma’am”. Don’t say “I’m sorry”. If they say “Why aren’t your shoes shined?” just use this answer.
d. “This recruit does not know but will find out, Sir/Ma’am/Petty Officer/Chief” – when you don’t know something.
4. Learn the Phonetic Alphabet
5. Learn Military time. It’s a 24 hour clock. Most importantly don’t say “hours” after the time. 0800 is “ZERO EIGHT HUNDRED”, not “EIGHT HUNDRED HOURS”. 2100 is “TWENTY ONE HUNDRED”. 1830 is “EIGHTEEN THIRTY.”
6. Learn the proper way to report:
a. Approach the door and knock 3 times.
b. Wait for the command “ENTER!” (you might wait a while)
c. March smartly to the desk/podium/person and say confidently and clearly, “Seaman Recruit Jones reporting as ordered.”
d. If they ask “What are your orders?”, it might be “Report to Recruit Training, Sir/Ma’am.” or “Deliver this message, Petty Officer” or “Report to Sick Call, Chief.”
7. Know the 11 General Orders of the Sentry
8. Know the Sea Cadet Oath
9. Know the Core Values of the Navy, Marine Corps, and the US Naval Sea Cadet Corps: Honor, Courage, and Commitment.
Other things to know!
1. Bring EVERYTHING on the Sea Bag List!
2. Don’t bring ANYTHING that is NOT on the Sea Bag List!
3. Parents should bring their cadets to RT. If there are problems with the paperwork, you might get it fixed right on the spot. Same for Sea Bag issues.
4. Start getting in shape now. Start running, doing push-ups, sit-ups, and stretching now. You will feel more comfortable those first few days.
5. Spend some time outdoors prior to going to RT. Get used to the heat or the cold depending on the season.
6. Most importantly. HAVE FUN! You will make new friends that will last a lifetime. You will come out with some really great experiences. Do your very best and time will fly. Some cadets have even told me “I was sad that it was over so soon!”