Young Achiever: Bermuda’s own Kobie
A young Bermudian basketball player walked away with a fresh approach to adulthood after graduating from an American military academy.
Kobie Reid, 17, attended Valley Forge Military Academy in Pennsylvania for two years before graduating in May.
He said: “I feel like I learnt how to be prepared for life, like I became more complete.”
Kobie, from Smith’s, said that he applied to the academy while he was still enrolled at Mount Saint Agnes Academy in an effort to play basketball at a more challenging level. He added that, despite the traditional military aspect, he did not initially look at Valley Forge as a military school.
Kobie explained: “I was looking at all the sports schools but a friend of mine who attended Valley Forge told me about the school and at the last minute I decided to go there.
“I knew I could have to do the military stuff, but I thought it would be a mix between this and basketball.”
School life at the academy, according to the cadet, incorporated American military traditions throughout the day.
He explained that students would be woken up by trumpet at 5.30am, clean and organise their dormitories and be ready for marches and drill, all within an hour.
Kobie added: “The change was a bit difficult at first, but once I got into a routine I was completely fine.
“Sometimes I felt unmotivated to do it, but since it was such a normal routine I just did it.”
His biggest challenge was adjusting to the unfamiliar faces. He explained: “I did not feel at home, I wasn’t able to come home and feel the comfort of the people I’ve been around my whole life.
“MSA had more of a family feel to it just because I had been there for so long, so settling in and making new friends was definitely the biggest challenge.”
Kobie said that he eventually settled down once he started to make new friends through sports, before he found a sense of belonging in his final year.
He added that interacting with people from different backgrounds helped develop his sense of compassion and respect.
Kobie explained: “There were so many people there from so many different backgrounds and you never know what someone’s been through.
“Relating to them by just spending a day with them really taught you a lot about being respectful and having better conversations with people.”
Kobie returned to Bermuda following his graduation and will attend Suffolk University in Boston at the start of September.
He said: “I now really feel like I’ll be fine in the real world. I’m not really nervous to grow up.”
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