CULP Trip 2012 – Cape Verde – Cadet Chapman

Continuing our series of CULP trip reports with Cadet Chapman’s report from Cape Verde.  When I first heard he would be going to Cape Verde, I had to check a map to find just where he was going.  Cadet Chapman had the unique opportunity to interact with the Ambassador, and the Commander of AFRICOM.

My name is Kyle Chapman and this fall I will be a MSII in the Golden Knight Battalion. This summer I had the amazing opportunity to travel to Cape Verde on a CULP deployment. I went to Cape Verde for 3 weeks in July with 11 other cadets and 2 cadre. The mission of our trip was to teach English to soldiers from the Cape Verdean military as well as building relations with the country.

The trip over took around 24 hours, we flew into the capital, Praia, where we would be staying the entire time. When we arrived we received the materials to teach the students and were briefed by the embassy. The next day we got right into teaching. Our group was split between the army and coast guard bases on the island we were on, Santiago. I was at the coast guard base where I taught 5 coast guard marines English. Most already had 1 to 2 years of English instruction so they could have basic conversations already. Teaching the students was a great experience; it is amazing how hard they worked to learn new knowledge. On the weekends we traveled around the island and visited the sights of Santiago. The best place we visited was the second largest town, Terrafals. It had some of the most beautiful beaches I have seen and we got to jump off a 40 foot cliff into the ocean. One memorable experience was being able to see a training exercise by the coast guard where we were able to meet the Ambassador from the US. Another great experience was being able to meet General Ham, who is in charge of AFRICOM. This was a great experience that was very humbling and made me feel lucky to live in this great country. I would recommend any other cadet to apply to go on a CULP trip.

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