By Navy Public Affairs Support Element West, Det. Northwest
BREMERTON, Wash. (NNS) — More than 40 Navy Region Northwest Sailors attended Naval Base Kitsap’s (NBK) 5th annual Women’s Symposium Mentorship Program: “Women in Naval History,” Oct 30.
The symposium was open to both male and female service members to empower and bring understanding to women and their effectiveness in the U.S. Navy.
“Women have been hitting major milestones throughout the military in recent years,” said Senior Chief Aviation Machinist’s Mate Rozy Castellanos, a Worland, Wyo. native and symposium panel member.
The integration of senior male leadership into the symposium held a strong tie to improving opportunities for females in the Navy.
“The symposium was another great opportunity to integrate men and women,” said Command Master Chief David Lynch, a Billings, Mont. native assigned as Command Master Chief for NBK. “Men and women are different; therefore we must honor and capitalize on their strengths.”
The symposium reached its goal of impacting those in attendance.
“This was my first time going to a women’s symposium,” said Ship’s Serviceman 2nd Class Amplias Young, an American Samoa native stationed with Puget Sound Tranisent Personnel Unit. “The symposium was not just a mandatory brief. I was actually moved and inspired.”
Guest speakers shared their own personal experiences, some rising from the enlisted ranks and establishing their dream of becoming commissioned naval officers.
“All of the stories shared hit a personal note with me,” said Young. “This was not a man-bashing event, but instead I left empowered, returning to work invigorated.”
The symposium continues to break down barriers, according to Lynch.
“I hope they were motivated and realize the sky is the limit,” said Lynch. “The cap has been removed and women have the opportunity to do anything.”
The goal of the symposium is to empower females in the Navy.
“The Navy has a track record of pushing the envelope by improving opportunities for women,” said Lynch. “I’m proud to be a part of that.”