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    Hastings Native Joins Navy, Hopes to Fly Jets

    Hastings Native Joins Navy, Hopes to Fly Jets

    Photo By Petty Officer 1st Class Christopher Lindahl | MINNEAPOLIS (Dec. 12, 2019) Navy Ens. Daniel Steiner, a recent graduate of the...... read more read more

    FORT SNELLING, Minn. – “There needed to be something more. I didn’t really know what that was right away, but I knew that being in an office setting and doing a 9-5 work day wasn’t going to make me the happiest.”

    Those are the words spoken by local Hastings native, Navy Ens. Daniel Steiner, a recent graduate of the Navy’s Officer Candidate School (OCS) when discussing his decision to join the Navy out of college. Steiner is currently assigned to Navy Talent Acquisition Group (NTAG) Northern Plains in Fort Snelling as one of the Navy’s Officer Hometown Area Recruiting Program (OHARP) participants before he ships off to Navy flight school later this month.

    Steiner is a recent graduate of the University of Wisconsin where he majored in Mechanical Engineering. During his time in Madison, Steiner was able to preview his future life as a mechanical engineer through various internships. He specifically recalled one internship during his sophomore year, just before he decided he wanted to join the Navy.

    “I loved that internship, the people were great, the atmosphere was phenomenal. We played soccer on our lunch breaks and we went mountain biking on our lunch breaks, it was just an awesome community and about as exciting as a job environment gets,” he said. “And I just saw myself thinking that was not going to satisfy me, it just wasn’t going to, there needed to be something more.”

    Since that internship, Steiner began seeking a future that would provide him the most fulfilment and happiness he could get. As it turns out, he circled back to his own family and followed in his father’s footsteps.

    “My dad had done OCS, he was a pilot in the Navy, so I knew kind of like what it was like,” he said.

    Once Steiner gave in to the idea, he was full speed ahead toward his goal.

    “I want to get up there, I want to get up in a plane - a jet specifically. So then a dream started to be formulated. I started doing a bunch of research, listened to a lot of podcasts, and then just prepping myself with what can I do to get to OCS, to become an officer in the Navy and then after that, what can I do to reach my extended dreams,” Steiner said. “So that’s where I’m at now, I’m at the beginning of the journey I guess.”

    Steiner is slated to leave later this month, less than two weeks after his 23rd birthday, to go south to the Navy’s flight school in Pensacola, Florida and Corpus Cristi, Texas and he couldn’t be more happy about it.

    “I applied for pilot, and pilot only. There’s an exam, it has some actual stick and rudder in the exam, which is kinda cool, so you have a feel of whether you’ve got decent hand/eye coordination,” he said.

    Steiner then had to complete a written exam, submit his college transcripts, write a motivational statement, conduct interviews with officers and get letters of recommendations, among other requirements.

    “All of that went in my package, which went through my recruiter - he was great - and we got it. We got the pilot slot.”

    When discussing the upcoming holiday season, Steiner is ready for the challenges of being away from his loved ones, but admits he hasn’t quite experienced it yet.

    “Everythig will start getting weird in about two weeks when I actually leave, when OHARP is no longer a thing. For Christmas it will be like, ‘Okay, this is what life is going to be like here,’ I’ll get maybe a five-day break and then you got to get right back down,” he said. “I’m fully prepared for the next two years to be fully enveloped by the Navy. Just because, obviously, flight school is going to be hard.”

    For future OCS students, Steiner has a few words of encouragement.

    “Make sure you know why you are going. Make sure your reason for joining the military is for you. Make sure it’s not something that just your parents want, or maybe your family is in so you think you should be in. The program is not worth it if you don’t want it.”

    Steiner is certainly motivated to make his own mark on the Navy, but also realizes that he has followed his father for the right reasons.

    “All growing up, I thought ‘I’m not going to be my dad, it’s not for me, I’m going to be an engineer,’ but it turns out, BAM! I’m my Dad!” Steiner said.

    For more information on officer or enlisted programs, call 1-855-NAVY-JOB or visit www.navy.com.

    NTAG Northern Plains is responsible for enlisted and officer recruiting, covering 393,000 square miles inside the states of North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota, nearly half of Wisconsin and parts of Illinois.



    Date Taken: 12.10.2019
    Date Posted: 12.10.2019 15:06
    Story ID: 355089
    Location: MINNEAPOLIS, MN, US 
    Hometown: HASTINGS, MN, US

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