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Inside the Ranks: A Glimpse into the Lives of UNG Dahlonega Cadets

Photo+by+Stillman+Blaylock
Photo by Stillman Blaylock

The University of North Georgia’s Dahlonega campus is not your average college campus. Amidst the picturesque North Georgia mountains, it houses a unique and dedicated group of individuals – the cadets of the Boars Head Brigade. While civilian students often share the same classes, campus and amenities, the lives of cadets are worlds apart. 

These young men and women have made a choice that sets them apart from their civilian counterparts. They are preparing for future military service while simultaneously pursuing their college degrees. It’s a dual life that demands extraordinary dedication and discipline.

From early morning physical training sessions to military drills on and off campus and classroom responsibilities, cadets have a demanding schedule that requires a keen sense of time management.

Joseph Ashley, a junior and cadet master sergeant in Headquarters Company shared his thoughts, saying, “Balancing academics and military training can be tough. You have to be organized and prioritize your responsibilities carefully. As long as you have the discipline, balancing academics in the corps is not an issue.” His sentiments are echoed by many others who emphasize the importance of time management and adaptability in their daily lives.

Matthew Douberly, the cadet first sergeant of Alpha Company said, “Cadets are definitely treated differently by civilian students, and this has been the case for me on many occasions…Cadets and civilian students are not at odds with each other in any sense, but we have a hard time relating to each other. Civilian students know so little about the structure, courtesies and traditions that Cadets have to follow and uphold.

“Cadets also have a hard time understanding how little the civilian students know about this structure and they can become frustrated with this lack of understanding.” – Matthew Douberly, c/1SG of Alpha Company

It’s not only cadets who have stories to tell. UNG’s civilian students coexist with cadets but don’t fully understand their unique experiences. Ana Cordero, a sophomore student at the UNG Dahlonega campus spoke out and said, “It’s really difficult to understand why they do certain things. I am interested in why many of them decided to go into that field though.”

By sharing their experiences, cadets aim to show that they are not just uniform figures; they are people with aspirations, challenges and dreams like any other college student.

UNG Dahlonega is a diverse and vibrant campus where cadets and civilian students coexist, each with their unique experiences and perspectives. 

At the end of the day, whether in uniform or not, they are all students trying to navigate the challenges of college life while pursuing their dreams.

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About the Contributor
Stillman Blaylock, Staff Writer
Hi there! My name is Stillman Blaylock and I am a Junior at the University of North Georgia. I am currently majoring in Communications with a focus in Multimedia Journalism in hopes of working in the entertainment/gaming journalism industry. Outside of my studies, I enjoy writing, cooking, programming, and spending time with my loved ones.
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