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.
Seaman Chantau Bowens, a native of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, is a student at NETC, learning the necessary skills needed to be a culinary specialist.
A culinary specialist is responsible for preparing high-quality nutritious meals to sailors’ fleet wide.
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.
Bowens, a 2010 graduate of JPT Taravella High School, credits success in the Navy to many of the lessons learned growing up in Fort Lauderdale.
“I learned to keep going and to never stop,” Bowens said. “Always reach your highest peak, even when people say, ‘no,’ just don’t stop.”
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.
Bowens 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 Bowens, who has military ties with family members who have previously served. Bowens is honored to carry on the family tradition.
“I have two uncles who served in the Army and I am proud to carry the family torch serving our country,” Bowens said.
As a member of one of the U.S. Navy’s most relied-upon assets, Bowens and other sailors know they are part of a legacy that will last beyond their lifetimes providing the Navy the nation needs.
“Serving in the Navy means waking up every day and making sure that everything is well put together,” Bowens said. “It’s making sure that the people of the United States are safe at all times.”