The United States Navy is opening service on submarines for female enlisted sailors. When discussing this change in Navy policy, Vice Adm. Michael Connor, commander of the fleet’s submarine forces stated, "Today, many of the people who have the technical and leadership skills to succeed in the submarine Force are women.”
Presently, the U.S. Navy submarine force will begin opening submarine billets for female sailors on both non-nuclear and nuclear subs. As mentioned in the title, the USS Michigan will be the first Navy sub to open billets for women.
In 2010, the Navy reversed its males-only policy on submarines. This change allowed female officers to serve at sea. The new policy will allow enlisted female sailors to serve on submarines that have female officers serving on board.
Female sailors wishing to apply for USS Michigan billets must do so by April 15. Women currently serving in the fleet who wish to convert to a submarine rating must complete the two-month BESS.
Also, the Navy announced that female sailors wishing to convert their rating to nuclear may also do so. This will require that they join new recruits in boot camp and receive training at the Navy’s Nuclear Power Training Command in Charleston, South Carolina.
According to Navy Live - the Official Blog of the United States Navy, the integration process will utilize two phases. Below are those phases outlined on the Navy Live blog.
"Phase I achieves crew integrations over a five-year period in both Pacific and Atlantic-based guided-missile and ballistic-missile submarines previously integrated with women officers.
Phase II calls for integrating enlisted women on new construction Virginia-class Block IV/V attack submarines beginning in 2020, as the ships become operational."Other Articles
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