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Polar Star is homeported in Seattle at 1519 Alaskan Way S. Seattle, WA 98134-1085. Our contact number is (206) 217-6260. If you will be reporting to Polar Star, we will assign a sponsor to you who will be happy to answer any questions.
Coast Guard Cutter POLAR STAR is looking to host four adventure seeking Auxiliary Culinary Assistants on their Operation DEEP FREEZE (ODF) 2023 deployment. The deployment will begin in mid-November and last until the end of March. Expected port calls include Hawaii, Australia, New Zealand, Tahiti, and Antarctica. This trip of a lifetime includes meals, lodging, penguins, and unforgettable memories!
Auxiliary Culinary Assistants will work alongside our team of professional active duty enlisted Culinary Specialists to prepare and serve meals to a crew of nearly 150 personnel. Basic requirements for interested chefs are listed below.
Basic Requirements include:
POLAR STAR is excited to welcome aboard Coast Guard Auxiliary Culinary Assistants for the very first time. If you are ready to join the crew, explore exotic places, and put your culinary expertise to use, please reach out to Polar Star’s Public Affairs Officer.
Questions can be directed to ENS Heather Allen at Heather.N.Allen@uscg.mil.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the Coast Guard Auxiliary (CGAUX)?
The Coast Guard Auxiliary is a uniformed volunteer component of the U.S. Coast Guard, composed of nearly 26,000 women and men who contribute their time and talents to assisting the missions of the U.S. Coast Guard. To learn more go to: www.cgaux.org
How do I join the Coast Guard Auxiliary?
To join the CGAUX, start by speaking with a current member of a local Auxiliary Flotilla and completing an application and background check. Once enrolled, you will receive an Auxiliary ID number and gain access to online initial trainings. A current member will be assigned to assist you with the process and in short time you will be attending meetings and actively supporting Coast Guard missions. More information can be found at: https://join.cgaux.org/
What is the Coast Guard Auxiliary Culinary Assistant (AUXCA) Program?
Auxiliary Culinary Assistants are active members of the CGAUX who receive training to support the culinary needs of Coast Guard units on land and at sea. More information can be found at: https://wow.uscgaux.info/content.php?unit=H-DEPT&category=auxchef
How do I become an AUXCA?
To be qualified as an AUXCA, you must complete a Personnel Qualification Standard (PQS) packet, preliminary medical screening, an introductory class, and hands on training in a CG galley. The process is set up to ensure the member’s success and enables the member to contribute to CG needs in a very meaningful way.
I am already a chef, do I need to complete the entire process?
Your previous culinary skills will greatly benefit the CG, but there are some differences between working in a commercial kitchen and a CG galley. The AUXCA training process will allow you to apply your knowledge in this new environment and learn the nuances of cooking in an operational setting.
What AUXCA opportunities does POLAR STAR have?
USCGC POLAR STAR is currently looking for four, adventure-seeking AUXCA’s to join the cutter for our Operation DEEP FREEZE (ODF) 2023 deployment. Those who deploy with POLAR STAR can expect to work with a team of professional active duty Culinary Specialists to prepare and serve meals to a crew of 150 personnel.
What is Operation DEEP FREEZE (ODF)?
POLAR STAR is the nation’s only operational heavy icebreaker, capable of breaking through 21 feet of ice. The crew deploys annually to Antarctica as part of Operation DEEP FREEZE, to clear a path through frozen waters so that supply ships can reach Antarctica’s McMurdo Station. These supply deliveries are critical to enabling continued operations throughout the unforgiving Antarctic winter.
What training is required prior to deployment?
Prior to getting underway on POLAR STAR, you must complete all training required by the AUXCA program. Additional ship familiarity training may be offered depending on the schedule of the AUXCA and the cutter.
What are the dates I would be underway?
POLAR STAR will be deployed from mid-November until the end of March. Exact dates will be finalized and communicated to the selected AUXCA’s well in advance.
What responsibilities would I have as an AUXCA on POLAR STAR?
As an AUXCA on POLAR STAR you will work with a professional staff of active duty enlisted Culinary Specialists to prepare and serve meals to a crew of nearly 150 personnel. While deployed, POLAR STAR is the crew’s home and just like on land, the kitchen is the heart of the home. Your passion for food preparation and high quality meals is essential to the morale of the crew and overall success of the mission.
What port calls will POLAR STAR make?
The COVID-19 pandemic is being monitored closely and will dictate the final port call schedule. Traditional and expected port calls include Hawaii, Australia, New Zealand, Tahiti, and Antarctica.
Will I be paid?
The CG Auxiliary Culinary Assistant program is a volunteer program, however, there are many rewards and benefits that are not monetary. As an AUXCA serving onboard POLAR STAR, you will have the incredible opportunity to visit Antarctica and see penguins, as well as make countless other unforgettable memories while underway! All meals and lodging are included.
More information on the benefits of joining the CGAUX can be found at: https://join.cgaux.org/benefits.php
Are there physical fitness or health requirements?
Being out at sea is very physically and mentally demanding. It is important that you are physically mobile and have no chronic health concerns.
Will I have to wear a uniform?
Yes, the CGAUX is a uniformed volunteer component of the Coast Guard. During the workday, you will wear a uniform almost identical to that of the active duty members.
What is my commitment to the CGAUX after Operation DEEP FREEZE?
Serving on POLAR STAR during Operation DEEP FREEZE does not obligate you to future CGAUX partition, but we hope your experience will encourage you to become even more active in your local CGAUX Flotilla.
Can I use this as job experience on a resume?
Absolutely! Volunteering as a Coast Guard Auxiliary Culinary Assistant is a meaningful way to serve your country while simultaneously perfecting your culinary skills.
I am interested in serving on POLAR STAR as an AUXCA, who do I talk to?
Thank you for your interest in supporting POLAR STAR as an AUXCA. Please reach out to our Public Affairs Officer, ENS Allen at Heather.N.Allen@uscg.mil
Who do I email if I have more questions?
Specific questions regarding serving as a CG Auxiliary Culinary Assistant onboard POLAR STAR can be directed to the Public Affairs Officer, ENS Allen at Heather.N.Allen@uscg.mil
Questions about the Coast Guard Auxiliary in general can be directed to your local Auxiliary Unit. Find a Flotilla near you by going to: https://www.cgaux.org/units.php