today4tomorrowThank you for your interest in joining Top Hatters Squadron.

It is a three part process to join us as a Cadet.  Please follow the steps outlined below for more details.  Cadet Transfers and Adults please visit your respective section.


1. Shadow Drill

What is Shadow Drill?

Shadow Drill allows a prospective cadet to determine if the program is right for them. The prospective cadet will drill along side the unit on Saturday and Sunday. THS allows for Shadowing during various drills and prior to our enrollment meetings. 

Attending a shadow drill requires a completed shadow application (see below) and a $30 drill fee (Paid by cash, check or via PayPal).  Attendence at one Shadow Drill Weekend is REQUIRED before enrollment.
Please read all the information below to learn about shadow drill weekend.

For your future Top Hatters Cadet to have a great shadow drill weekend:
  • Shadow cadets are not authorized to stay overnight.

  • Wearing of comfortable walking shoes, non-formfitting slacks and black crew neck shirt or polo (no logos/writing) Outerwear (jacket, etc. if desired.)

  • Your cadet will experience US Navy dining at the base galley. Real Navy base...Real Navy food.

  • Limited access to intensive training evolutions. Due to the liability of not being an enrolled cadet, some functions (such as firing ranges or hands-on small boats training) may have limited participation from shadow cadets - but will be present to observe.

  • Uniform items are not issued to shadow cadets until enrollment.

  • Cadets are not permitted cell phones. Please do not bring them.

  • USNSCC policy prohibits non-enrolled adults to attend drill activities with cadets due to required background checks and specific training requirements. Activities/ceremonies that are open to non-enrolled adults will be announced when scheduled. We appreciate your cooperation with this policy. Be assured, your cadet is in good hands with our well trained and experienced staff.

Please fill out the following form and bring it with you to your scheduled Shadow Drill Weekend

Please contact the unit Commanding Officer, LT Joann Taft to schedule your prospective cadet's shadow weekend.

 Please coordinate cadet drop off / pick up time with the Commanding Officer.

On Saturday and Sunday of Shadow weekend you will report to 

1776 Gilbert Street (BLDG B-30), 3rd deck.
We are across the street from the base Chapel and C-9. Please use the door with Sea Cadet Logo / White Contact Magnet Information Plaque. This door faces Maryland Avenue.
b 30
Drop off and pickup by a USNSCC identified adult is located at:
NEX Mini-Mart/Gas Station (west side of the building):
1565 Mall Drive Bldg #CD-13, Norfolk, VA 23511
Saturday Sunday
Please Coordinate with the CO for Pick Up / Drop off Dates and Times



The Shuttle will arrive at 1565 Mall Drive Bldg #CD-13, Norfolk, VA located at the Mini-Mart to pickup cadets arriving for their first day of drill. 

If parents wish to be present at check-in, please ride the shuttle with your cadet to check-in. 

Once check-in is complete, our shuttle will depart from the Naval Station to return parents to the Mini-Mart.



The shuttle will arrive at 1560 Mall Drive, Norfolk, VA located at the NEX complex Mini-Mart to pickup cadets arriving for their second day of drill. 

 Drop Off: 

The Shuttle will return cadets to the Mini Mart at 1565 Mall Drive Bldg #CD-13, Norfolk, VA to rejoin their parents.

Drop Off:

OPTION A:  Parents Not Participating in End-of-Drill Quarters Meeting

The shuttle will return cadets to 1560 Mall Drive, Norfolk, VA located at the NEX complex Mini-Mart to rejoin their parents

OPTION B: Stay for the optional End-of-Drill Quarters Brief 

  1. Parents who wish to attend the optional end-of-drill debriefing can ride the shuttle. The shuttle will arrive at 1565 Mall Drive Bldg #CD-13, Norfolk, VA located at the Mini-Mart to pickup parents. Please Notify the Driver during Pickup if you would like to attend Quarters. 

  2. The shuttle will then depart for the Naval Base (1776 Gilbert Street, Building B-30, 3rd Deck).

  3. Once the end-of-drill quarters is complete, our shuttle will depart from the Naval Station to return parents and cadets to the Mini-Mart.




2. Parent Information Meeting


CONSTITUTION HALL @ B-30 (3RD DECK) This meeting is a requirment for enrollment at Top Hatters.

What will you do during this enrollment meeting?

  • Get your paper application to start filling out

  • Tour the facility

  • If you (recruit) have shadowed already and would like to turn in completed paperwork, arrive with a regulation haircut. All cadet ID's are required to have a military regulation haircut (males need to be clean shaven).

  • Walk through Parent Handbook and the unit SOP. As the unit CO/XO questions and how this differs from other programs & other sea cadet units.

Enrollment periods are 3 times per year. Limited enrollment periods allow cadets to gain their basic knowledge and skills prior to attending trainings. Below is the schedule for upcoming enrollment.
  • Meeting December 4th for January enrollment

  • Meeting in March for April enrollment. Date TBD

  • Meeting in August for September enrollment. Date TBD

This Handbook (Program Overview) is specific to Top Hatters and is an addition to the Parent Handbook found at All Parents are encouraged to read the Handbook annualy as changes or updates may be made after initial enrollment. Cadets will read this handbook as part of their enrollment process.


3. Enrollment

 You Future Cadet LOVED their time with the unit during shadow drill and you've attended a mantaroy parents meeting so what happens now? Read through the following information on how to proceed.

Note: If your child has turned 13 over the summer and is not yet entering High School, please contact the Commanding Officer, LT Joann Taft, to discuss which program appropriate. 13 year olds may serve in the Sea Cadets only at the discression of the Commanding Officer.

Initial Enrollment  Monthly Drill Fee Annual Renewal Training Fees
$280 $30 $120 $150-500
This covers the enrollment fee of $220 & uniform fee of $60.  Discounts given as your Cadet achieves higher Rank. Summer/Winter training(s) - fees vary based on training subject and length.

Cash or Check works great for us and it doesn't come with extra fees.
However, if you would like to have the convience of electronic payments, we offer online option from your computer or mobile device (Found in our Top Shop). 
We can also swipe a card when you check in at drill.

All electronic payments have an added 5% fee.

Training fees are paid directly to each training contingent and not at the unit level.

There are no refunds on any payments to Top Hatters Squadron for any reason.

Please scan all documents including the application, immunizations, insurance cards, & photo ID into ONE PDF file and turn in your cadet application by uploading it to our Admin drop box found on the main menu above.

Transfer/Re-Enrolling Cadet

Transferring cadets: have current cadet file in-hand or old unit send to THS prior to attending drill. All forms must be current to attend drill. Please contact the unit Commanding Officer using the form below to work through the transfer process.

Re-enrolling cadets must turn in all forms and have updated insurance card/tricare letter in packet no later than 15 days prior to expiration date. 



Adult Volunteer

Adult applicants must be in good health, commensurate with their age group and be free from an ailment or condition that would prevent them from satisfactorily performing their primary duty of supervising youth. NOTE: Adults not physically qualified to perform all duties may still participate with a waiver from National Headquarters (NHQ) considering the parameters of their expected contribution to the NSCC program. Adults wishing to volunteer with us will "Shadow Drill" twice. If you are a prior USNSCC cadet or adult, have your paper file from your former unit ready for the Commanding Officer. For the safety and security of our unit, each potential adult shadow will have an interview with the CO prior to attending. 

THS volunteers will commit to 75% attendance, participate fully in drill weekends (including overnighting at facility), completing adult education and trainings, as well as working to excell as a leader. If you are interested in becoming an adult volunteer, contact the Commanding Officer using the form below. Adult enrollment fees are $40 annuallly.




Visiting Cadet

Are you an Active Cadet from another unit who is visiting the Hampton Roads area and interested in drilling with Top Hatters while you are in town? Please Contact the Unit Commanding Officer using the form below for more details on experiencing what its like to be a member of Team Top.



ADA Statement

stethoscopeA medical examination, similar to a high school sports physical is required for all cadet applicants to the Naval Sea Cadet Corps (NSCC) or Navy League Cadet Corps (NLCC). No one will be denied admission to the NSCC/NLCC due to medical disability. Where a medical condition precludes full, unlimited participation, a Request for Accommodation (Click here for: NSCADM 001 Pages 9 & 10) may be presented by the parent or guardian for review so the cadet may participate in NSCC activities to the maximum extent possible.