Becoming a parent or guardian in the Sea Cadets is an exciting opportunity. Unlike many other extracurriculars, Sea Cadets allows your son or daughter to chart their own path to success, step outside of the comfort zone, and seek challenges.


Cadet units typically meet one weekend per month or one night per week during the school year. Training away from home is conducted during school vacation periods.


Annual enrollment fees range from $150 to $250 per year depending upon location.  Uniform fees vary from $200 to $400 in the first year.  Summer and winter training costs are typically $250 to $275 per week.  Training fees include instruction, room, and board.


In compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), it is the policy of the Sea Cadets that no qualified person will be excluded from participation in, denied the benefit of, or otherwise subjected to discrimination by the USNSCC simply because that person has a disability. The Sea Cadets will grant reasonable accommodations where necessary to permit full participation.


Safety is our number one priority. All of our volunteers undergo regular background checks and cadets are under adult supervision throughout training.

What Parents Have to Say

David (not his real name) loved <Sea Cadet training> and had some challenges. He struggled a lot with being away from home... Two <senior cadets> took David to the side, and David told them he was "just trying to make it to graduation."

The <senior cadets> advised David to focus on smaller goals, just make it to the next 30 minutes, make it through class, then to lunch, etc. David took the advice to heart and while he still struggled, that's what got him through. David loved how caring each Cadet was and learned that he can lean on them during tough times.

He absolutely loves the program and says they do so many fun things. As a parent, I am beyond grateful to everyone involved in Sea Cadets. The things these children learn will stick with them for life. During <recruit training> my Cadet learned how to overcome emotional and mental hardships, a tool that will serve him for years to come.

The mother of a cadet who attended Navy League Orientation (a boot camp style training, June 2022)

One of the most memorable pieces of parenting advice I’ve ever heard came when I was just 18. My dad offered this to a new dad, and I overheard it: “Whatever your kids are involved in, you’re involved in.”

Fast forward 22 years and that means we are all-in on U.S. Naval Sea Cadet Corps. This amazing organization is completely run by volunteers. I will admit that the “mama bear” side of me was a little hesitant to have my kids spend so much time with people that I didn’t know. But I didn’t need to worry. Every single adult I’ve encountered in this program is a top-notch human being.

Most volunteers I’ve met are parents who have had kids or grandkids come through the program; some are retired military who want to give back. I have met several folks whose kids are long grown, but they’ve stayed with the program for 6, 8, 10, or even 20 years because it is just THAT good.

Our training had 10 adults committed helping out in some capacity. TEN! We all pass background checks and commit to required annual training hours. We are a highly trained volunteer corps with strict protocols in place to ensure cadet safety above all.

We also have adults who aren’t even Corps members give their time and expertise to our Cadets. Our friend did a 45-minute zoom with our Marksmanship cadets, sharing his knowledge and wisdom from his 30+ year public service career. The cadets loved it!

As a mama, it’s invaluable to have other adults helping to teach and lead my kids. For kids to have other adults who care about them, instruct them, and cheer them on not because of obligation, but just because of who they are, is magical to a developing brain. On a subconscious level, they are learning that the world is good, that people are good, and that THEY are good. The old wisdom that “it takes a village to raise a child” is still true - and probably even more true - in this day and age. This is the BEST village!

A volunteer and parent

I want to tell you about Advanced Trainings! The Sea Cadets “claims to fame” are the week-long (or longer) training camps that are held all over the country during winter, spring, and especially summer breaks. Training topics cover orientation/boot camp to culinary, medical, special warfare, STEM, marksmanship, scuba, aviation, and leadership, just to name a few. (Cadets can do mini SEAL training! How cool is that?!) The cost to attend is extremely fair - Here are some of my impressions of our cadets:

I was so impressed with these young people. They are 10-18 years old. They came from all over the eastern US. (Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Kentucky, Washington DC, Long Island, and Nebraska, just to name a few places.) They did amazingly fun things and amazingly hard things. They spent 6-7 days away from home, some of them for the first time ever, sleeping on Army cots in the Indiana National Guard armory. They got letters from home, but had no access to phones or electronics, and had no calls home. (Happy to report that everyone survived the screen withdrawal, too. ) They stood security watch every night. They did PT (physical training… aka exercise) every day. They learned to shoot rifles, and how to do it safely. They spent time in the classroom studying all sorts of skills and terminology - and there WERE tests! They ate new foods. They made new friends. They learned teamwork, resolved their differences, and helped each other thrive throughout the week.

They were a sight to behold in their dress whites during graduation, where they marched with precision and stood at attention for the entire 90 minute ceremony - which was choreographed and taught by the most senior cadets, NOT by the adults. I think my two kids who attended matured by at least a year each. (They are even getting along better! What?!) It was a true privilege to meet these kids and watch them in action last week - and to see the principles in action that are, well, drilled into them during their monthly drills throughout the year. The Sea Cadets mission is to create leaders of character, and these 40 or so kids are well on their way!

Mother of a cadet, 2022

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2300 Wilson Blvd, Suite 200
Arlington, VA 22201


The mission of the United States Naval Sea Cadet Corps is to build leaders of character by imbuing in our cadets the highest ideals of honor, respect, commitment, and service.


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