Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Where I have been, where I am going (Part 1)

We recently had a column titled An Impromptu Interview. A school project teammate of mine asked me about my background, partly in person, partly by email, and I made a column of our conversation. Like me, Chester is an NTA (non-traditional age) student and I asked him for his story. We will run the beginning today, and finish it tomorrow:

I joined the Navy in 1982. To this day I still do not know why I decided to join the service. I just did it. I guess maybe because I did not know what direction I was headed in and was just plain bored at home. There were other things going on at home that I did not like too much. There were many people who were doing nothing with their lives and on the fast track to becoming bums, drug addicts and alcoholics.

Many of my friends were getting married without jobs. I just could not see myself doing these kinds of things. So, I shipped out, joined the US Navy and have not had time to look back since.

I had a rocky start, not enough self-discipline and there were no real mentors to guide me in the beginning. I started in the nuclear power field. I was going strong and made it past basic electronics and electricity courses, all 35 modules over almost 6 months of school. I then made it past the basic phase of electronic technician school.

Unfortunately, I blew it while going though the radar phase of school. Had I taken the time to study more rather than play I could have passed. So, to the fleet I went as an undesignated Seaman.

After around 2 years of sailing seeing Europe, the Scandinavian countries in the North Atlantic and all of the Caribbean, I finally got my act together and struck for the PN (Personnelman) rating. After, getting serious and keeping the play for times when it was time to play I really began my career in the Navy. I still had no idea how far I was going to go.

I ran into some really good people on my first ship and they helped guide me. I made second-class and was on my way. My career stalled for a while after that because of changes in my attitude.


jbv's Competitive Edge 


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