Young Airman contributes early

U.S. Air Forces Central, Baghdad Media Outreach Team
Story by Senior Airman Andrew Lee

Date: 02.02.2011
Posted: 02.02.2011 01:57
News ID: 64631
Young Airman contributes early

TIKRIT, Iraq - Still new to the Air Force with only a year and three months in service, an airman from Langley Air Force Base, Va., received a tasking to deploy to Iraq and to do a job requiring accuracy at its max.

As a young and fresh E-3 still adjusting to the regular Air Force life, Airman 1st Class Shanita Dorsey got thrust into a joint environment.

Deployed to Contingency Operating Base Speicher, Iraq, Dorsey works in the combat support hospital as a team member for the 467th Casualty Liaison Team.

“This is an entirely different job and experience for me,” she said. “At Langley AFB, I was working on evaluations at the military personnel flight. Now, I’m working at a hospital sending casualty reports for all U.S. military, civilian and contractor patients working on COB Speicher.”

In her job before her deployment, she ensured all the evaluations were correct and were the best they could be, but there were revisions along the way to the final product.

On her deployed mission, every single report she sends to U.S. Forces-Iraq Headquarters is very different than the next, but Dorsey ensures they all are equivalent in being 100 percent accurate the first time. Her team and she precisely note every injury each casualty encounters, and makes it certain the Department of Defense’s credibility is kept.

Although working under new conditions after already having a new job, the Hinesville, Ga., native is taking a full grasp on her latest occupation. As a new airman first class who has never worked with Army before, is now on a four-man team with three other airmen, in a joint environment outnumbered by 91 U.S. Army soldiers.

“For me it wasn’t too hard to be able to work in a joint environment, but if there’s anything for me that I’m not used to, I’ll try hard to make it a normal thing for me,” Dorsey said.

While on her first deployment, she is exceeding the expectations of her leadership.

“Being young and on her first deployment, Airman Dorsey is doing a great job,” said Master Sgt. Apryl Wagner, 467th CLT non-commissioned officer in charge. “She’s a very hard worker and always dives into work. She also always comes in with a positive attitude that helps keep the morale in the office up.”

For her, keeping spirits high in the office is easy, especially when she’s enjoying her job.

“My job is nice here and my team here is like a second family,” said Dorsey. “I like my job here because I know I’m having an impact on the joint mission and Operation New Dawn, but I like my job more when it’s not busy because then I know no one is hurt.”