My Camden Experience - Avery Spratt
My journey began on August 18th, 2020. The decision I and many others were about to make would change our lives in a way I never would have imagined. I had just finished my freshman year at Spring Valley High School, and was going into my Sophomore year. I had two choices, I could either continue online school for another year due to Covid, and I was already having a hard enough time keeping up with grades, or I could attend Camden Military Academy and be in an environment filled with structure and a daily routine. The choice was clear, I was going to Camden. I was fortunate, the drive was only 30 minutes from Columbia to Camden so I was close to home. I was assigned to Charlie Company, at the time the TAC officers were First Sergeant Collins and First Sergeant Hester. For the first few days I had a room to myself, I can remember laying in bed at night thinking about what I had ahead of me and what I would face. At times those thoughts were almost too much and sometimes overwhelmed me. I met my roommate Andrew Tucker from New Jersey, who became a close friend. We got along very well and had a few things in common. Little did I know, I would undergo immense change in character and mental fortitude during my time at CMA, and create unbreakable bonds with fellow cadets.
One of the most important things I learned is not to hate or despise hard times, but instead embrace those challenges for they are what truly shapes and molds one’s character. Discipline and determination are some of the biggest traits that will get you places in life. I am extremely fortunate to have had this opportunity to come to CMA, because I wouldn’t be where I am today if I hadn’t. The lessons I have learned at CMA will help me all throughout my life. I am thankful for the people who have helped me along the way, their advice and wisdom, and their knowledge and lessons have taught me to always remain humble and listen to those who have seen many sides of life and speak from experience.
This journey has come to an end, but more awaits. To all of my fellow cadets, I wish nothing but success and a prosperous future in life and may God always be with you. I will always remember the good times we’ve had and I look forward to crossing paths with you all sometime in the future. I know that CMA has given us the tools and preparation we need to face challenges that will arise in both our career and our personal life, and to follow the path of success no matter what it takes.
- Cadet Avery Spratt (Class of 2023)