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Two Virgin Islanders Among Graduates of Coast Guard Academy

May 21, 2009 – U.S Coast Guard Cadets First Class Urdley N. Smith and Luis F. Garcia, both Virgin Islanders, were among 225 cadets to graduate on Wednesday, May 20, from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, New London, Connecticut, and be promoted to the rank of ensign.
Both graduates received a Bachelor of Science degree, which was witnessed by family and friends from the Virgin Islands.
This graduation marked the 128th commencement, which featured the Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano as the keynote speaker. Napolitano said, "My commitment to you is to do everything I can to ensure that the Coast Guard has all the tools and resources it needs to achieve everything the country asks of you." Coast Guard Commandant Admiral Thad Allen introduced the secretary, gave the oath of office and said, "the cadets are the future leaders of the Coast Guard."
As for Smith and Garcia, they will report for duty onboard Coast Guard cutter Thetis, which is home ported in Key West, Florida, and Coast Guard Cutter Venturous in Tampa Bay, Florida, respectively.
Garcia is the son of St. Croix resident Anna Foster of St. Croix, and Smith is the son of Urdley and Margarita Smith of St. Thomas.
Founded in 1876, the U.S. Coast Guard Academy has a tradition as one of the finest and most selective colleges in America. The smallest of the five federal service academies, the Coast Guard provides a four-year bachelor of science program with a full scholarship for each individual. Unlike the other federal service academies, however, there are no congressional appointments.

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May 21, 2009 - U.S Coast Guard Cadets First Class Urdley N. Smith and Luis F. Garcia, both Virgin Islanders, were among 225 cadets to graduate on Wednesday, May 20, from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy, New London, Connecticut, and be promoted to the rank of ensign.
Both graduates received a Bachelor of Science degree, which was witnessed by family and friends from the Virgin Islands.
This graduation marked the 128th commencement, which featured the Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano as the keynote speaker. Napolitano said, "My commitment to you is to do everything I can to ensure that the Coast Guard has all the tools and resources it needs to achieve everything the country asks of you." Coast Guard Commandant Admiral Thad Allen introduced the secretary, gave the oath of office and said, "the cadets are the future leaders of the Coast Guard."
As for Smith and Garcia, they will report for duty onboard Coast Guard cutter Thetis, which is home ported in Key West, Florida, and Coast Guard Cutter Venturous in Tampa Bay, Florida, respectively.
Garcia is the son of St. Croix resident Anna Foster of St. Croix, and Smith is the son of Urdley and Margarita Smith of St. Thomas.
Founded in 1876, the U.S. Coast Guard Academy has a tradition as one of the finest and most selective colleges in America. The smallest of the five federal service academies, the Coast Guard provides a four-year bachelor of science program with a full scholarship for each individual. Unlike the other federal service academies, however, there are no congressional appointments.