Those cadets that already had an encampment under their belt were on staff, either working as group leaders of first-time cadets or working in other areas.
Joshua Pelkey attended his 3rd Wings Encampment; his 2nd in Michigan. "I enjoyed being on staff this year," said Pelkey. "I was on air operations. I got to work around planes all day, and I learned how to get planes ready for missions and how to schedule flights. Best of all, I got to do zero gravity moves in a glider."
Christopher Fisher experienced his first encampment. He attended the one in NY, and flying in the C-130 was one of his highlights. "I want to do it again," he said. "It was really fun. I made a lot of friends and learned about leadership and teamwork. Next year Im hoping to be on staff, and my goal is to become a Flight Commander." Fellow first timers Nathan and Zachary Myers were equally excited about returning next summer too.
Ian St.Yves, the cadet commander of the Plattsburgh Squadron, went to the NY Wing Encampment for his 4th time and was on staff for his 3rd time. His first on staff experience was as a flight sergeant, his 2nd as a flight commander; this year he was the officer in charge of making sure that communications between the staff was properly working. This entailed handing out military communications radios to all , repairing radios, and sometimes relaying information in person.
"I was called the most overworked cadet," St.Yves said with a laugh. "I was running everywhere, relaying information, giving out batteries, replacing lost radios and much more. It was hard, it was exhausting, but I loved every minute of it."
"I couldnt list for you everything I've learned," St.Yves said of his 4 years of encampment experience. "The most important thing though would be developing leadership skills. I've learned how to teach skills to cadets from 12 to 18 year s old, and I've developed good public-speaking skills."