The Navy

Between 2018 and 2023, I spent 5 years as a Submarine Officer in the US Navy. I spent that time trying to become an officer that enlisted Sailors deserved.

The 2017 Army-Navy Game, with my roommates.
Graduating from the Naval Academy.
Christening PCU New Jersey
A port call in Spain with my division of Nuclear Mechanics.

In 2014, I accepted an appointment to the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD. I spent 4 years there, where I majored in Math. I graduated with distinction in 2018, commissioning as an Ensign in the US Navy.

My first assignment was to Nuclear Power School in Charleston, SC, where I spent 6 months learning the basics of naval nuclear propulsion. I graduated in February 2019. After that, I stayed in Charleston for Prototype, where I learned to stand watch on a real nuclear reactor (the MTS-626, a converted submarine). After qualifying Engineering Officer of the Watch (EOOW), I left Charleston to attend Submarine Officer Basic Course (SOBC) in Groton, CT. I graduated in December 2019.

In January, 2020, I reported to Norfolk, VA. I was temporarily assigned to USS John Warner, a Virginia-class attack submarine, and deployed in the spring of 2020. On John Warner I was the Main Propulsion Assistant (MPA), responsible for the ship’s engines and nuclear mechanical systems. As MPA, I led a division of eleven nuclear-trained mechanics. I qualified in submarines in October, while underway.

After returning to Norfolk in November 2020, I served aboard PCU New Jersey, a Virginia-class submarine under construction at Newport News Shipbuilding. In June 2021, I passed the Engineer’s exam and graduated at the top of my class from Prospective Nuclear Engineer Officer school.

Towards the end of 2021, I was selected as the Submarine Squadron 8 Junior Officer of the Year: the top officer among about 80 of my peers. Because of this, Jackie and I were able to take a trip to DC to meet Admirals and policymakers on behalf of the Submarine community. It was a great time!

Meeting the Chief of Naval Operations at the Pentagon.

Until 2022, I served as a division officer, leading 3 separate divisions of 9 to 11 nuclear-trained Sailors. In January 2022, I became the Assistant Engineer, second-in-charge of the nuclear reactor, 62 Sailors, and about a billion dollars of equipment. I managed these assets myself for about 3 months while the Engineer was gone. In February 2022, I took over New Jersey’s quality assurance program, managing maintenance and documentation of seawater-tight systems (for example, the SUBSAFE program).

For personal reasons, I decided to leave the Navy, and resigned my commission in May, 2023. This was a tough decision for me, and you can read about it here. My time in the Navy was formative for me, and I won’t soon forget the places I went, the skills I learned, or the way it made me feel.