Photo by LT Monica Mondloch
Written by MIDN 4/C Timothy Keohane
On the 24th of February, 2016, the Boston NROTC Consortium welcomed Lieutenant Commander Neil Gabriel for a brief on the Surface Warfare Community, hoping to gain new knowledge about what it means to be a SWO. As the current placement branch head for PERS-41 at Navy Personnel Command, LCDR Gabriel ensures that all Surface Warfare commands are adequately manned with capable personnel. Midshipmen were briefed on the importance of the Navy’s powerful surface fleet, noting how junior officers play a significant role in contributing to maintenance of this might. LCDR Gabriel described SWOs as “the most empowered officers in the Navy,” and emphasized the opportunity for leadership the surface community for provides JOs immediately after they enter the fleet. He added that Midshipmen have the ability during their senior year to pick the ship they will be reporting to after they commission into the fleet.
In addition to discussing the leadership prospects junior Surface Warfare Officers experience as new members of the fleet, LCDR Gabriel discussed the various surface warfare pipeline options available to officers. He noted that the Surface Warfare Community emphasizes helping their Officers obtain a graduate level education, gives JOs the ability to plan their sea and shore tours around their family and professional goals, and financially rewards the top performers in the community. LCDR Gabriel concluded his presentation by reiterating the positive career prospects and benefits of being a Surface Warfare Officer, making them particularly relevant to Midshipmen. He highlighted the immediate opportunity to join the fleet in a forward deployed command, assume a leadership position, and serve in the fleet directly after commissioning. This synthesis of ideas left the Midshipmen in attendance with a thorough understanding of all the aspects of being a Junior Surface Warfare Officer.
Visit the official PERS-41: Navy Personnel Command here: http://www.public.navy.mil/bupers-npc/officer/Detailing/surfacewarfare/Pages/default.aspx