July 22, 2021

Pregnant Cadets, Midshipmen Must Give Up Their Child Or Their Career. Two Senators Want To Change That.

Source: Defense One

Journalist: Jacqueline Feldscher

Two senators are teaming up to change an “unfair, antiquated” policy that requires students at military academies who get pregnant to choose between abandoning their military career or their child.

Last week, Sens. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, and Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., introduced the Candidates Afforded Dignity, Equality, and Training, or CADET, Act of 2021, which would ensure that students at military universities have the option to continue their education while also maintaining their parental rights.

Under current policy, students at military schools are not allowed to have dependents. As a result, women who get pregnant or men who father a child have three options. To stay at school, they can either get an abortion or give the baby up for adoption, severing their legal and financial responsibility. To keep the baby, they must leave the military academy. Any student that leaves the school in their junior or senior year has to repay the government for their education, since they will not fulfill their commitment to serve in the military after graduation.

Read the full story and more from Defense One.


  • Katherine L. Kuzminski

    Deputy Director of Studies, Director, Military, Veterans, and Society Program

    Katherine L. Kuzminski (formerly Kidder) is the Deputy Director of Studies, and the Director of the Military, Veterans, and Society (MVS) Program at CNAS. Her research special...