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Coast Guard gives military institute cadets access to its facilities

Cadets who marched here Sunday to gain enhanced education, physical fitness opportunities

Cadets from the Oakland Military Institute, who won loud applause along the downtown Pleasanton parade route Sunday as they marched in the Tri-Valley Veterans Day parade, have just been granted access to the Coast Guard's athletic facilities in Alameda.

Coast Guard Capt. Keith Turro, commander of the Base Support Unit Alameda, and Dr. Mark Ryan, superintendent of the Oakland Military Institute, signed a memorandum of agreement Wednesday which will grant the institute's cadets access to Coast Guard Island's athletic facilities.

The purpose of the agreement is to set forth the terms of a new partnership between the Oakland Military Institute and the U.S. Coast Guard to fulfill the educational and physical fitness needs of its student body. The agreement will also introduce the cadets to the Coast Guard's members, missions and opportunities for military service, Turro said.

"I'm excited to be establishing this partnership with this school and to give the student body a chance to be exposed to the Coast Guard through our service members and facilities," said Turro.

The Oakland Military Institute is a public college preparatory academy founded in 2001 by governor-elect Jerry Brown when he was mayor of Oakland. Its mission is to provide a structured and rigorous academic program through a military framework where cadets develop as leaders, scholars and citizens.

"This agreement will help OMI to have a place for our athletic programs, and it also provides a link to the Coast Guard for academic programs, study groups and tutoring," said Ryan.

More than 300 of the school's cadets marched in the Pleasanton parade, a singing, chanting group of precision marchers who stretched more than a block as they paraded up Main Street.

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