Auburn Native Trains to be a U.S. Navy Future Warfighter

By Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Jerry Jimenez, Navy Office of Community Outreach

GREAT LAKES, Ill. – Sailors are some of the most highly-trained people on the planet, according to Navy officials, and this training requires highly-dedicated instructors.

At Naval Education and Training command, instructors at advanced technical schools teach sailors to be highly skilled, operational, and combat ready warfighters, while providing the tools and opportunities for continuous learning and development.

Fireman Stephanie Rowe, a native of Auburn, Washington, is a student at NETC, learning the necessary skills needed to be a damage controlman.

A damage controlman works with firefighting teams in maintaining the systems used to put out fires onboard Navy warships.

Students attend advanced technical schools after “boot camp.” They are taught the basic technical knowledge and skills required to be successful in their new careers.

Rowe credits success in the Navy to many of the lessons learned growing up in Auburn.

“I learned from my family that whatever I do, work hard at it and do it to the best of my ability, and then some,” Rowe said. “I also learned to not take time for granted, it’s always valuable.”

NETC educates and trains those who serve, providing the tools and opportunities which enable life-long learning, professional and personal growth and development, ensuring fleet readiness and mission accomplishment.

NETC is made up of six commands that provide a continuum of professional education and training in support of Surface Navy requirements that prepare enlisted sailors and officers to serve at sea, providing apprentice and specialized skills training to 7,500 sailors a year.

A key element of the Navy the nation needs is tied to the fact that America is a maritime nation, and that the nation’s prosperity is tied to the ability to operate freely on the world’s oceans. More than 70 percent of the Earth’s surface is covered by water; 80 percent of the world’s population lives close to a coast; and 90 percent of all global trade by volume travels by sea.

Rowe plays an important role in America’s focus on rebuilding military readiness, strengthening alliances and reforming business practices in support of National Defense Strategy.

“Our priorities center on people, capabilities and processes, and will be achieved by our focus on speed, value, results and partnerships,” said Secretary of the Navy Richard V. Spencer. “Readiness, lethality and modernization are the requirements driving these priorities.”

Serving in the Navy is a continuing tradition of military service for Rowe, who has military ties with family members who have previously served. Rowe is honored to carry on the family tradition.

“My grandfather was in the Navy and my cousin serves in the Navy now,” Rowe said. “I have cousins in the Coast Guard and the Air Force, my uncles were all Marines and my grandfather was in the Army. I have a great sense of pride carrying the family torch serving our country.”

As a member of one of the U.S. Navy’s most relied-upon assets, Rowe and other sailors know they are part of a legacy that will last beyond their lifetimes providing the Navy the nation needs.

“I wanted to pick something that made a difference,” Rowe said. “When I see my family, it reminds me that I’m here doing what I can to protect my country so they can be happy and safe at home.”