A Teacher’s Voyage Beyond the Classroom Aboard USS Harry S. Truman

Jennifer MareesThis blog was written by Jennifer Marees, a science teacher at The Bolles School in Jacksonville, Fla. She was one of several educators who recently visited USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) to learn about the Navy.

Navy STEM – or science, technology, engineering and math – increases the talent pool of future Sailors, naval scientists and engineers to enable the success of naval missions and protect the lives of Sailors and Marines.

People. Power. Physics. Efficiency. Those were the immediate words that came to mind to describe my recent trip aboard USS Harry S. Truman.

It is the people on board that must come together in perfect coalescence with the physics of the world in order for the USS Harry S. Truman to function efficiently. That efficiency and scale of power becomes immediately apparent when the transport plane lands on the carrier’s expansive deck caught only by a single cable and then transitions from 150 mph to a complete stop in just three seconds.

Sailors move into position to prepare for continuous flight operations after launching an EA-18G Growler assigned to the Zappers of Electronic Attack Squadron 130 from the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) in the Atlantic Ocean, June 13. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Brandon Parker/Released)

Sailors move into position to prepare for continuous flight operations after launching an EA-18G Growler assigned to the Zappers of Electronic Attack Squadron 130 from the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) in the Atlantic Ocean, June 13. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Brandon Parker/Released)

Moments later as I stood on the flight deck, the power resonates again as the tremble from the loud fighter jets’ engines moves through my body as the jet accelerates to take off the carrier just feet away from us. But then, you take a look around and notice that same scale of power in a more subtle, quieter way as you observe all of the people involved to make the flight deck run with efficiency. The precision needed to run the flight deck is accomplished by all of the men and women involved working together as a team that relies heavily on trust and nonverbal communication.

However, that same trust, communication and efficiency is not just seen on the flight deck but throughout the ship. From the jet engine and maintenance repair shops to the media center and bakery shop as well as the foc’sle and medical facilities, the men and women involved all have roles in their field that come together for a bigger goal for the ship to function.

The jobs and roles of each man and woman varied drastically as we toured all the different aspects of the ship. However, the beaming sense of pride and greater understanding of their individual role to help maintain and run USS Harry S. Truman was the common thread that united all of the occupants of the ship as one. These men and women learn at a very young age that important lesson as well as a sense of leadership and great responsibility.

There are opportunities for both men and women to work hands on and gain valuable experience in an entire range of fields that include science, technology, engineering, physics and mathematics. The beaming sense of pride is not surprising when as a visitor you see the results of all of these pieces come together to allow the USS Harry S. Truman to function at its apex of power.

People, power, physics, efficiency and pride are attributes President Truman would find fully worthy for an engineering marvel bearing his name.

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