JOINT BASE CHARLESTON, S.C. –
Naval Nuclear Power Training Command's Nuclear Power School Class 1102 celebrated their graduation in a ceremony at Rickover Circle at Joint Base Charleston - Weapons Station June 17.
The guest speaker, Capt. David Kirk, USS Florida (SSGN 728) (Gold) commanding officer, recognized the tremendous contributions of the families of Class 1102 students.
"It is the support of the families that allows us to answer the call of our nation," Captain Kirk said.
"We cannot do what we do without nuclear-powered ships and the role all NNPTC graduates play is crucial," the captain said.
The top officer in each graduating class receives the Vice Adm. Behrens award, established in 1986 to honor the first director of the Nuclear Power School. Ensign Joshua Bergeron received the award with a 3.76 overall grade average.
Machinist's Mate Third Class Petty Officer Jason Stropki was recognized as Class 1102 Honorman, the enlisted graduate with the highest grade average.
"Not only have our students gained a great deal of technical knowledge pertaining to their jobs, they have also gained the skills necessary to be successful in any profession," Capt. Tom Bailey, NNPTC commanding officer said.
Captain Bailey congratulated the students and then thanked the staff for their diligence in ensuring the success of yet another class. The graduation ceremony marks the completion of one of the Navy's most difficult academic programs.
The NNPTC curriculum begins the initial training phase for officers and enlisted personnel selected for the naval nuclear propulsion program. The school provides fundamental in-rate training and basic reactor plant theory needed to produce safe and trusted naval nuclear propulsion plant watch standers. All graduates of Class 1102 will proceed in the nuclear training pipeline by attending the six-month prototype curriculum in either Charleston, S.C. or Ballston Spa, N.Y., before being assigned duty onboard a nuclear powered aircraft carrier or submarine.
Since the commissioning of the USS Nautilus, the Navy's first nuclear powered vessel in 1955, Navy ships and submarines have steamed more than 140 million miles on nuclear power. The success of the nuclear program can be attributed to the excellence of the training and the commitment of its service members.
For more information about the NNPTC its history, visit NNPTC's official website at https://www.netc.navy.mil/nnptc.