Mt Airy Composite Squadron Cadets embrace new challenges

June 2018. Mt Airy, Md.Mt Airy Composite Squadron, a unit of the Maryland Wing (MDWG), Civil Air Patrol (CAP) cadet cadre proudly displays a “Can Do” attitude and commitment to excellence. Following the cadet program mission to transform youth into dynamic Americans and aerospace leaders, our cadets are young leaders-in-training who think seriously about their futures. This summer will be a busy one for Mt Airy cadets as they participate in various special activities designed to enhance their skills and provide opportunities to excel in achievement.

Mt Airy cadets C/MSgt Katherine Grasley, C/TSgt Dylan Marty, C/SrA Dimitry Madsen and C/SrA Conner Snyder will begin their leadership journey as they participate in the West Virginia Wing, Encampment. C/MSgt Jackson Curtis will also journey to this encampment as a cadet cadre staff leader. Encampment is a full immersion, military-style, training environment that inspires cadets to develop leadership skills, learn aerospace sciences and related careers, commit to a habit of regular exercise and solidify their moral character. It is an intensive environment that challenges cadets to move beyond their normal comfort zones and fosters personal growth.  Cadets are provided opportunities to participate in team building exercises, orientation flights, leadership courses and emergency services training. Cadets must attend an encampment to qualify for access to CAP’s National Cadet Special Activities (NCSA) Programs.

Beyond the core CAP cadet program curriculum, cadets have opportunities to follow their own interests and explore potential careers. The higher a cadet advances in cadet grade, the greater breadth of opportunities become available. NCSA programs are national programs that require cadets to qualify for through a nationwide selection process. NCSA’s provide cadets with hands-on experience, opportunities to develop and practice skills under the guidance of experienced CAP senior members and certified pilot instructors. This summer, several Mt Airy cadets applied for and met the qualifying selection criteria for NCSA participation. C/Maj Daniel Flanick and C/MSgt Grasley will attend Regional Cadet Leadership Academies (RCLA). Having already attended a RCLA, C/CMSgt Aurora Albertson will attend the Model Aircraft and Remote-Control Flight Academy and the Hawk Mountain Search and Rescue School. C/1stLt. Raegan Buzzard will attend both the NFA-Great Lakes Region Powered Flight Academy and the Cyber Defense Training Academy. Buzzard previously attended RCLA and Hot Air Balloon Academy last summer and the Civic Leadership Academy earlier this spring. Cadets advance their level of experience, embrace new challenges and in many instances, establish their life-long career goals by progressing through the CAP cadet program and taking advantage of the many programs offered through CAP NCSA’s.

Mount Airy Composite Squadron is a composite of both senior and youth programs whose members are drawn from Carroll, Frederick, Howard and Montgomery counties. The Squadron meets Thursday nights, 7 p.m. to 9 p.m., at Mt Airy Veterans of Foreign War, Post 10076, 107 S. Main, Mt Airy, Maryland. Have a passion for aviation, dream of flight, are considering a career in the military? Want to serve your community and enhance your leadership skills? Join us. Youths, ages 12 to 18, parents and adults interested in the cadet or senior program are always welcome to drop in. For more information, contact Commander Laura Smith-Velazquez at lsmith@cap.govFollow Mt Airy squadron on Facebook at

Photo credit:1stLt. Mary Alvarado

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