The U.S. Coast Guard is seeking new recruits and putting Alaskans on the top of its search list. Sara Francis is the spokeswoman for Air Station Kodiak and said the Coast Guard has always been open to enlistment from all over the U.S., but future expansion has led recruiters to look to the last frontier for its next crop of service men and women.
— (USCG Recruits 1 :25 “And as we continue to expand our efforts…speak that Native language.”)
She said this practice takes place in other parts of the country. For instance the Coast Guard looks for Spanish speakers in the south and French speakers in the northwest and northeast parts of the country who can easily work with French Canadians.
Francis said there are no numbers for Alaska Natives currently enlisted in the Coast Guard, but she estimates it is less than 1 percent. She said those who are serving have already been a huge asset to various Coast Guard missions in Alaska.
— (USCG Recruits 2 :24 “We’ve had help from Dean…no background in the area that you live.”)
Francis said much of the Coast Guard’s recruitment efforts are basic outreach in rural communities to let students know what their options are. Locally, she said village schools team up with Air Station Kodiak for tours.
— (USCG Recruits 3 :34 “A group of teenagers comes from a number of…health services field.”)
Amy Johnson is the recruiter in charge in Anchorage and said the Coast Guard also helps cover the costs of travel and lodging for people interested in visiting the recruitment offices.
— (USCG Recruits 4 :29 “Generally speaking the Coast Guard does pay…test and physical.”)
While there are many ways to join the Coast Guard, the two most common are through the Coast Guard Academy or completing eight weeks of basic training to become enlisted.