Local CAP wins national recognition

by | October 5, 2019 5:00 am

Last Updated: October 2, 2019 at 3:38 pm

Ten of the Civil Air Patrol squadrons of the South Carolina Wing, Civil Air Patrol, were awarded the Quality Cadet Unit Award for 2019, including the Walterboro-based ACE Basin Composite Squadron, including the local unit.
This national-level award is an objective-based accomplishment which all squadrons in Civil Air Patrol (over 1,000) strive to achieve. The Quality Cadet Unit Award (QCUA) has been awarded for 10 years in an effort to improve the Cadet Program within Civil Air Patrol, but the ACE Basin Composite Squadron has never received the award until now.
To be named a Quality Cadet Unit, the squadron leadership works to attain 10 goals: achieving a minimum of six benchmarks will earn a squadron this national award. The squadrons are measured on their growth and recruiting goals, as well as retention rate — did they retain cadets from one year to the next? Since every cadet is entitled to five free powered orientation flights, the squadrons are measured on whether they provided this free incentive to cadets in their first 90 days of membership. Other measurements include whether the squadron has a CyberPatriot team, the cadets have completed basic emergency services training, and the senior members have completed a course on leading cadets and achieved their Yeager Award.
The ACE Basin Composite Squadron has been one of the fastest growing squadrons in South Carolina this year, meeting the benchmarks for growth. Most of the new cadets finished their basic emergency services training, helping the unit meet that benchmark. In all, the squadron met seven of the 10 measurements to qualify for this award.
The cadets from this squadron are working to earn their rocketry badges, and a few earned disaster relief ribbons for serving at South Carolina Wing headquarters after Hurricane Dorian. Cadets have been able to fly on a C-17 twice, most of them attended an 8-day encampment training during the summer, and some have joined the Civil Air Patrol’s CyberPatriot Team as well.
For some of the squadrons in the South Carolina Wing, winning the QCUA is routine — in fact, the Lowcountry Composite Squadron based on Hilton Head Island received this award for the ninth consecutive time. Others, including the Florence Composite Squadron and the Greenville Composite Squadron, received their third consecutive award. This year the Lexington Composite Squadron received its fifth award, the 4th consecutive year being named a Quality Cadet Unit.
The South Carolina Wing of Civil Air Patrol has 16 cadet or composite squadrons statewide, including Spartanburg, Myrtle Beach, York, Hilton Head Island, Beaufort, Walterboro and others. The ACE Basin Composite Squadron meets on Tuesdays from 6-8 p.m. at the Lowcountry Aviation Hangar, 637 Aviation Way, Walterboro. They are hosting an Open House on October 1 at 6:30 p.m. to welcome a new group of cadets (age 12-18) into the unit.
For more information about this squadron, contact Maj Tina Peterson, CAP, at 843-460-7445 or tina.peterson@scwgcap.org.

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