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"You get so many opportunities in the Coast Guard, there’s always a chance to get better at your craft."
Petty Officer 3rd Class | Coast Guard
Like all Coast Guard enlistees, Anthony was required to attend Basic Training and go through the same entry process. “When you join, it’s without a designation,” he says. Most Coast Guardsmen spend a bit of time as something called a “non-rate.” This means that they are basically trained members of the Coast Guard who have not yet completed formal training for a specific rate (or occupation). As a non-rate, Anthony was first stationed on a 110-foot patrol boat in Hawaii.
“I worked in the deck department,” he says. “My job there was mostly maintenance of the hull and the deck of the [cutter]. So, making up lines and painting the ship. However, underway, I did a little bit of navigation, worked on a gun crew and was the cutter rescue swimmer on the boat. I did a bunch of different things, but you mostly work as a team, just to ensure that the ship is running smoothly.”
Telling the Stories
After a successful deployment to Bahrain, Anthony decided to use his storytelling skills and began the journey to his current role as a public affairs specialist. Anthony attended Defense Information School (DINFOS), a requirement for all public affairs personnel across the Military. DINFOS trains service members in a variety of subject areas, including print and broadcast journalism, graphic design and more. At DINFOS Anthony had the creative freedom to learn and explore his personal passions while developing his professional career.
Anthony describes the duties of public affairs specialists as “telling the Coast Guard’s story.” He adds, “Part of my job is going out to different units. We take photos and videos for social media, basically telling people what the Coast Guard does. Everything from search and rescue missions to changing out buoys for the maritime aids to law enforcement. We tell every aspect of it.”
Despite Anthony’s lively schedule, military life is not as demanding as people think. “You’re not always just going to be out in the woods in a foxhole doing something like that,” he says. Anthony and his fellow Coast Guardsmen enjoy a great work-life balance. Anthony and his wife live in Brooklyn. When they’re not working, they like to try new restaurants and go to comedy shows. In fact, for the past few years, Anthony has been developing a stand-up comedy routine himself. “I definitely appreciate that I’ve gotten to do comedy all around the States and other countries being in the Coast Guard,” he says.
The Military allows people like Anthony to further their education and grow both professionally and personally. “The Military is diverse in what you can do. There are so many different avenues and opportunities and ways you can grow as a person,” Anthony says.