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'I am so honored to serve my country'

Dylan Goetz • Jun 19, 2018 at 3:00 PM

Spring Lake native Anne Allman thought her father was crazy when he first suggested she join the U.S. Coast Guard.

Now, Allman has realized the “great opportunity” and will be attending the U.S. Coast Guard Academy starting July 2.

Allman graduated from Spring Lake High School in 2016, then attended Michigan State University for two years. She studied in the James Madison College and focused on political affairs and political science.

She initially heard of the idea of applying for the U.S. Coast Guard Academy in high school, but didn’t have much interest until she attended MSU. Her father, Kevin Allman, was the first to try and persuade her to apply.

“I owe a lot of it to my dad,” she said. “He brought it up to me and first I thought he was insane. I was like ‘You think I’m going into the military?’ Then, of course, it was all I thought about for the rest of the year.”

Still on the fence about her future, Allman attended the Coast Guard Festival in Grand Haven and met Lt. Darnell Talbert, who gave Allman advice about the academy and helped make up her mind.

“(Talbert) gave me a lot of information and made me want to go to the academy,” she said.

That night, Allman went home and started the application process. The initial application includes multiple essays and optional interviews, but Allman wasn’t able to attend an interview since she was still attending classes at MSU.

Allman applied in the summer, and learned of her acceptance in November.

“They actually called me on the phone instead of just getting a letter or an email,” she said. “I was in shock.”

The academy features a 200-week program with military activities over the summer, and school in the fall and spring semesters. All cadets graduate in four years with a Bachelor of Science degree. Admission to the academy is highly-competitive with fewer than 400 applicants accepted each year with over 2,200 applicants.

“I am so honored to serve my country and the community of Grand Haven,” Allman said. “I hope to make them proud.”

Allman will be a member of the Division 1 sailing team at the academy, located in New London, Connecticut. She wants to use the opportunities in the Coast Guard to travel and be hands-on by helping communities.

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