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The Helmsman

Rescue Swimmer descending from helicopter

The U.S. Coast Guard Ethos

I am a Coast Guardsman.
I serve the people of the United States.
I will protect them.
I will defend them.
I will save them.
I am their shield.
For them I am Semper Paratus.
I live the Coast Guard Core Values.
I am proud to be a Coast Guardsman.
We are the United States Coast Guard.

A Comprehensive Guide for Future Recruits

Congratulations on your decision to join the United States Coast Guard. We welcome you and your family into our family. We're excited to see what you'll become in our organization. Whether you're joining right out of high school, after earning a college degree, leaving a civilian job, or transferring from another service, you'll have the opportunity to advance yourself as you leverage the endless possibilities a career in the Coast Guard has to offer.

As a member of our organization, your first order is to read, understand, and acknowledge the information provided here in The Helmsman. There are many new experiences and opportunities ahead for future recruits and we want you to understand all the requirements and responsibilities that are expected of you as you prepare for Recruit Basic Training at Training Center Cape May, New Jersey. Ask your recruiter about information that is unclear.

Warning Order

The information you provided for enlistment is considered a statement of fact to the best of your knowledge. If you provided information that is knowingly false, you may be prosecuted in accordance with the Uniform Code of Military Justice (UCMJ) or administratively separated. This violation may be punishable by fines, imprisonment, or both. Providing a false statement or acknowledgment of fact includes, but is not limited to, the following information:

  • Police/civil involvement
  • Drug use
  • Prior military service
  • Medical history
  • Education
  • Age
  • Dependents

UCMJ Article 104a (10 USC 904a) Fraudulent Enlistment, Appointment, or Separation.

Any person who: (1) Procures his/her own enlistment or appointment in the armed forces by knowingly false representation or deliberate concealment as to their qualifications for the enlistment or appointment and receives pay or allowances thereunder: or (2) Procures his/her own separation from the armed forces by knowingly false representation or deliberate concealment as to their eligibility for that separation: shall be punished as a court-martial may direct.