NEWPORT, R.I. -- Naval War College Professor William Bundy, a retired Navy commander and director of Gravely Naval Warfare Research Group, spoke to 39 Sea Cadets from the New England area who graduated from a regional Petty Officer Leadership Academy (POLA), Jan. 1, at Naval Station Newport.
Bundy, who graduated from the first Sea Cadet boot camp in 1962 at Great Lakes, Ill., talked with the cadets about the qualities of leadership and the value of teamwork.
"Leadership is a matter of learning and experience and not charisma," he said. "You have to develop a life-long learning attitude. Being a Sea Cadet is about adapting to a different set of values."
"A key to success is listening and sharing," he said.
Cadets received classroom instruction on more than 40 leadership topics that included motivating and disciplining others, ethics and core values, basic needs and human behavior, understanding and managing stress, conflict resolution, and elements of leadership.
"This training has opened my eyes and encourages me to prepare for the future," said Cadet Petty Officer 3rd Class Parker Vandenberg of Cherryville, N.C. "It's important that you know the people you are leading."
"What you are doing here is a great opportunity," said Capt. Douglas Mikatarian, commanding officer, Naval Station Newport. Mikatarian, a submariner, spoke to the cadets about his leadership experiences aboard submarines and surface ships during a Leadership Lessons Learned class.
"Leadership teaches you how your decisions affect other people," he said. "School, training and education really never stops."
"I've gained more self-respect and want to keep moving forward," said Cadet Seaman Victoria Tramutolo of Islip, N.Y. Tramutolo, a high school sophomore, was one of six females who attended the training.
"This training has taught me to take responsibility for my actions and how to fix my mistakes," Tramutolo said.
The POLA training day included morning and evening physical fitness, reading time, and instructing military drill and ceremony.
"Some of this training is a review of the basics for me, but it's an opportunity to make my unit better," said Cadet Petty Officer 3rd Class Matthew DiPiro of Roslindale, Mass. "I've been able to expand my skills in communication."
By Bob Krekorian, Naval Station Newport Public Affairs