An Expedition of a Lifetime: Junior Under Officer Leach

JUO Leach sitting on lookout for icebergs aboard the JSASTC vessel.

We are forever in awe of the incredible travel and adventure opportunities open to members of the Armed Forces Community, whether they are skiing in the Alps, braving the elements in Norway or honing their skills with international allies in Cyprus.

Junior Under Officer (JUO) Leach from City of Edinburgh Universities Officers’ Training Corps (CEUOTC) recently enjoyed just such an opportunity as part of a sailing expedition to the Arctic Circle through Joint Services Adventure Sailing Training Centre (JSASTC). 

JUO Leach sits on the starboard side of the JSASTC vessel between two other members of her crew

Based in Gosport, JSASTC aims to develop the leadership qualities essential to Armed Forces personnel through offshore sailing expeditions, and provides Sail Training Craft (STC), experienced instructors and a wide range of training courses to meet these aims.

Here’s what JUO Leach had to say of her experience:

JUO Leach sits aboard the JSASTC ship in high-visibility and safety gear

‘I had an amazing time sailing between Iceland and Greenland and as second mate with JSASTC. We had to navigate to avoid collisions with icebergs, and I was on iceberg lookout halfway up the mast as we approached a glacier! 

‘A couple of real highlights for me were officially crossing into the Arctic Circle and seeing the Northern Lights, as well as lots of Arctic wildlife. It was a fantastic voyage with an amazing group of people, and an experience I will never forget.’

JUO Leach and two other crew members pose for a group shot in the Arctic sunshine

To find out more about life as a UOTC Officer Cadet, click here.

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