PACIFIC OCEAN –
Seven midshipmen joined the crew of U.S. Navy's forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS George Washington (CVN 73) to gain valuable, motivational and instructional experience not attainable in classroom environments, May 24.
These midshipmen are assigned to George Washington for two weeks to further their professional development, introduce operations of the Navy and Marine Corps, reinforce academic programs, instill a sense of pride and identification with the Navy, and pique interest in fleet operations.
"This experience will let you [midshipmen] spend some time in other Sailor's worlds; allow you get to know the Sailors you will serve, see the environments you'll be in and gain experience in the work you'll do," said Capt. Greg Fenton, George Washington's commanding officer. "The whole point of this training is to allow all of you to have some time to ensure you know what you want to do."
Each midshipman was assigned a junior officer or first class petty officer as a running mate to facilitate training. Running mates will show midshipmen their jobs, the environment and the next potential step in each midshipman's career.
"I chose to pair them up with officers whose fields matched that particular midshipman's interests," said Lt. Cmdr. Nick Long, George Washington's training officer. "They'll be able to shadow them and learn about that profession while learning about the Navy community as a whole."
Rear Adm. Mark Montgomery, commander, Battle Force 7th Fleet, spoke with the midshipmen as they began to settle into shipboard life and experience their prospective fields.
"This experience will drive your decisions, so ensure you get the right perspective," said Montgomery. "George Washington is a good ship. It's got a bit of everything and it's a good way to learn what integrated operations are like."
These potential officers are, on average, 21 years-old, and some are fresh out of college and have little practical shipboard experience or knowledge. Being on a ship offers them a unique insight into their professional development.
"I thought the ship's environment was intense," said Midshipman 1st Class Devin Duplaisir, a Cornell University recruit officer training command candidate, from Oceanside, Calif. "There are so many people here who are from vastly different communities who all work together to serve a single mission."
Midshipman 2nd Class Titus Davis, a Morehouse University recruit officer training command candidate, from Atlanta, originally expressed an interest in the aviation community and saw the vast opportunities offered by an aircraft carrier.
"I've always been interested in aviation, but after coming aboard, I got to see just how much a carrier has to offer," said Davis. "I have so many different options in front of me now...I can do anything I want to here."
George Washington and its embarked air wing, Carrier Air Wing 5, provide a combat-ready force that protects and defends the collective maritime interest of the U.S. and its allies and partners in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region.
This article was originally published at: http://www.navy.mil/
- PACOM: (posted May 27, 2014 )-