Atterbury hosts Civil Air Patrol cadets

About 140 cadets from the Civil Air Patrol recently graduated from the week-long Indiana Wing Cadet Encampment program at Camp Atterbury.

Cadets from around Indiana, the Midwest and as far away as North Carolina participated.

As cadets learned how to drill, they gained self-confidence and began to lead. Leadership skills were bolstered with the Leadership Reaction Course, which is essentially a timed obstacle course. Cadets had to work as a team and develop strategies for the successful completion of the course.

Drill and leadership were just some of the roles played at Encampment. A large focus was aerospace education and flying. Cadets had the opportunity to learn from experienced personnel, both military and civilians, about topics such as tradition, airpower and model rocketry.

Cadets also participated in flights of Civil Air Patrol airplanes. Occasionally, these flights used the airspace in conjunction with other military aircraft, such as the UH-60 helicopter. When airborne, cadets are able to fly the airplane — typically a Cessna Skylane or Skyhawk.

Through the encampment, cadets can earn awards, become eligible to attend special CAP activities and earn advance placement to the pay grade of E-3 if a cadet chooses to join the Air Force. After the cadet program, cadets may enter the senior program, which starts at age 18.