Some of the Coast Guard trainees.
PHILIPSBURG--The candidates of the new Basic Coast Guard Training (BOK) 2023 recently entered marine base Parera after four intensive introductory weeks. The 21 aspirants from Aruba, Curaçao, and St. Maarten all share one goal, a promising career with the Coast Guard.
The candidates of the new Basic Coast Guard Training (BOK) 2023 recently entered marine base Parera after four intensive introductory weeks. In photo: The Coast Guard trainees. Story on page .
During the introductory weeks, the young recruits underwent four weeks of classroom lessons under the guidance of their instructors and experienced various orientation camps. During the camps, the aspirants marched for kilometers, swam extensively, cooked their own meals, built rafts, and completed amphibious exercises. Their final exercise for the introductory weeks began last Thursday evening. For the final exercise, the aspirants marched and paddled at sea, with marine base Parera as their destination on Friday morning. At the entrance of marine base Parera, the aspirants were warmly welcomed with loud applause by Coast Guards and other colleagues.
During the entrance ceremony, Coast Guard Director Walter Hansen gave a speech to the aspirants and their instructors. “Your journey began on August 14, as 21 individuals. 10 candidates from Aruba, six from Curaçao, and five from St. Maarten.
“Now, four weeks later, I see one group. Being a Coast Guard member is a beautiful, important, and honorable profession. You are two things in one: a police officer and a sailor. Now, the rest of the training begins. This is just the end of the first phase. Everything you learn and practice now can be applied in the future. Now is your chance to make mistakes and learn. You can only succeed if you do it together,” Hansen said.
After the director’s speech, the aspirants were allowed to receive their official BOK caps as a token of appreciation for their achievements during the introductory weeks. This week, the aspirants will begin the basic skills module, including first aid and marksmanship, which will last for eight weeks. The Coast Guard wishes the Coast Guard aspirants great success.