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    The Chemistry of Navy Recruiting

    The Chemistry of Navy Recruiting

    Photo By Petty Officer 1st Class Timothy Walter | 171018-N-FU443-0055 CABOT, Ark. (Oct. 18, 2017) Future Sailor James Wood, left, and...... read more read more

    The chemistry teacher’s wife had just gone into labor and that left Electronics Technician 1st Class Cory Bennett standing in front of the chemistry class at Cabot High School next to a substitute that normally taught history. Bennett had planned on simply giving a presentation on the nuclear power program of the Navy but on this unique day, he embraced the opportunity to lend a helping hand to the students in Cabot, Ark.

    “I ended up taking over the lab and doing it with the class,” Bennett said. “From that day forward, the chemistry teacher will call me up when he needs a hand and I will help teach the class.”

    Teaching chemistry labs was simply like riding a bike again. As luck would have it, before he became an ET, he was a machinist’s mate in the nuclear field and he specialized as an engineering laboratory technician (ELT).

    It’s been two years since that unexpected turn of events and Bennett is still helping the students with more than just labs. During the Little Rock Navy Week in October, he worked with his command to get the Navy new virtual reality simulator to make a two-day visit to Cabot High School so that students could experience what it’s like to be a Special Warfare Combatant-Craft Crewman (SWCC) by driving a virtual boat to extract a Sailor from hostile waters. Nearly 1,000 students were able to pass through the simulator and learn more about the breadth of opportunities in the Navy.

    For Bennett, a native of Benton, Ky., and currently serving as a recruiter with Navy Recruiting District Nashville, seeing those students make it to the fleet is the best part of the job.

    “The point where I got to see people make it out the fleet, make rank and finish school helped put everything in perspective for me. That is the part I enjoy about it, not necessarily going to recruit but watching them find their place in the Navy and watching them grow. I like that,” he said.

    As he has continued to mentor students, he has noticed just how much the recruiter helps to shape the type of service member that each future Sailor will become.

    “With high schoolers, we will sometimes work with these young people for almost a year. After a while you can tell which future Sailors is working with a particular recruiter. During that time of mentoring, we turn them into little versions of ourselves without realizing it. They start talking like their recruiter and acting like the recruiter. When you see that person succeed, you realize that you have created another mini-me and sent them out the fleet,” he said.

    In at least one case, a future Sailor has been so successful that Bennett found himself slightly envious of his opportunity to be so close the highest ranked enlisted Sailor, the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy (MCPON).

    “One of my future Sailors is currently the MCPON’s assistant with a desk right next to his. I talked to him the other day and was a little jealous because his grandmother went to visit him and met the MCPON. Yet, I still haven’t met the MCPON,” he said, laughing.

    Since then, Bennett has helped that particular Sailor’s brother join the Navy and their youngest sibling is eager join in a few years.

    And Bennett is getting ready for his next lab.

    Navy Recruiting District Nashville is responsible for recruiting efforts throughout more than 100,000 square miles of the states of Tennessee, Arkansas, Alabama, Georgia, Mississippi, Kentucky and Virginia.

    For more information on NRD Nashville, visit us at http://www.cnrc.navy.mil/pages-nrd/nashville/default.html or on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/NRD.Nashville



    Date Taken: 10.19.2017
    Date Posted: 11.09.2017 15:30
    Story ID: 254856
    Location: AR, US
    Hometown: BENTON, KY, US

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