What does sponsoring a cadet or multiple cadets require of a sponsor family?
Sponsoring an international or out of state cadet includes activities such as: periodically inviting your cadet(s) over to your home, occasionally contacting him/her by phone, e-mail or postal service. Some sponsors go all out and have their cadets over two or three times a month but we discourage providing a place for them to go for all of their free time. They do need to spend time bonding with their class/company mates. What most cadets want, is just a place to relax, watch sports or a movie, sleep! In a home… snacks to nibble on and in best case scenario, a hot meal in a home setting. Some may also want to just talk and reflect on their new experiences at The Citadel.
In addition to opening your home for the cadet, you may also be the link between cadet and parent. Freshman parents endure an anxious first semester and you can provide them with firsthand knowledge as to how their cadet is getting along.
How do I get in touch with my cadet (cadets)?
Cell Phone: Each cadet is required to have a cell phone but freshmen use of cellphones is prohibited until the end of Challenge Week (Sunday, 20 August). After Challenge Week, you may call but you will most likely need to leave a message. Do not expect a response immediately- they are on a strict schedule.
Email: Contact may also be made through e-mail after Sunday, 20 August as all cadets should have access by that time and should check their messages frequently.
Postal Mail: You are also able to contact them through regular mail. Each cadet has a mailbox assigned the week they are on campus.
NOTE: Please be patient if your cadets do not respond to your communications right away. During those first two weeks, their time is so regimented that they may be unable to get back to you. If you continue to have trouble contacting them after the first week of classes, please call our office for assistance.
When are cadets allowed to come to my home?
Their free time is dependent on several things. For freshman cadets, general leave ordinarily starts on Friday afternoon after parade but some may end up staying on campus to complete their duties. On Saturday, all cadets should be released no later than two hours after SMI (Saturday Morning Inspection). If there is no SMI, they should be free to leave after military training and/or other commitments. During the fall, cadets could be free to leave after home football games. On Sundays through Parents’ Weekend, first-year cadets will be free after religious services. After Parents’ Weekend (29 Sep-1 Oct) first-year cadets are free at approximately 8:00 am. On Friday and Saturday nights, general leave ends at midnight but varies for upperclassmen. On Sunday, first-year cadets must be back in the barracks for evening formation (5:50 pm through Parents’ Day and 7:50 pm afterwards) and sometimes earlier depending on individual companies. For those first-year cadets attending Sunday evening services, they may need to return to campus early in order to attend religious services at 6:00 pm. Learn your cadets’ requirements so that they get back to campus on time to meet all their required duties.
All general leave will be restricted if your cadet is not militarily proficient. Any overnight or weekend leave they earn second semester will be restricted if they are not academically, militarily, and physically proficient.
What are cadets allowed to wear at my home?
First-year cadets have no civilian clothes with them. They should bring PTs with them if they want to be a little more comfortable. It wouldn’t hurt for you to remind them to bring their PTs. Some cadets leave civilian clothes at their sponsor’s home sent by parents, but under no circumstance should civilian attire be worn away from your home or taken back to school.
Can a cadet spend the night or a weekend at my home?
During 1st semester, no first-year cadet, with the exception of members of some athletic squads, is allowed overnights. During 2nd semester, first-year cadets that are academically, militarily and physically proficient are allowed one overnight and one weekend during the semester. They may ask to stay at your home at this time. If your cadet achieves Gold Stars and/or Dean’s List for academic excellence, he/she will receive an additional overnight. Upper-class cadets will have overnight leave 1st semester but how many is dependent on his/her standing.
What is expected if upper-class cadets are also in your home?
Your home should be a safe haven for cadets. They should not be expected to brace, square corners, etc. On the other hand, cadets should, however, show respect for the upper-class cadets, follow uniform rules while on leave away from your home, etc. Interaction between cadets and upper-class cadets is limited on campus. You should not have to change your daily routine at home in order to accommodate one or the other.
May I send “care packages” to my cadet?
This is your choice, but be careful not to draw attention to your cadet with frequent, large packages. Sending small packages of food/goodies back to the barracks with your cadet might be the best way, but check with your cadet. He/she knows what is expected of him/her within the company. If you want to do something special for your cadets’ birthdays, we’ll be happy to help you. Call Mrs. Shelton Milner at 953-4875 for ideas & suggestions.
What should I do if I hear that my cadet is having a problem?
If you hear that your cadet is having issues with their freshman year experience or academics, contact the Battalion or Company TACs (supervisory adults within the barracks). Contact our office if you are unable to reach the TACs. We will then direct you to other company officers as necessary and hopefully the problem can be resolved.
What should I do if I have a problem with my cadet?
If you have a problem with your cadet, please call this office and speak with one of the staff. .
What do I do if I find out my cadet is withdrawing from school?
Please notify our office. Occasionally, sponsor families will know before Citadel staff does. If we are notified by the Commandant’s Department that a cadet is withdrawing, we will contact you as soon as possible. It takes two days normally for the withdrawal process and we must wait until its conclusion. If it is early in the academic year, we may ask you to take another cadet in his/her place.