Midshipmen Get a Taste of Life at Sea onboard USS Roosevelt

Aspiring Midshipmen Get a Taste of Life at Sea onboard USS Roosevelt

Twenty-three midshipmen departed from guided-missile destroyer USS Roosevelt (DDG 80) after almost three weeks aboard the ship Aug. 10.

While on board, these aspiring officers, who came from the U.S. Naval Academy and various Navy Reserve Officer Training Corps (NROTC) units throughout the U.S., were exposed to various operations on board the ship.

 “The Midshipmen were here to get an idea about what the surface warfare community is like and what we do on ships,” said Lt. j.g. Dustin Ellis, the midshipmen liaison. “They also followed their running mates, an enlisted Sailor, around to get an idea of what enlisted personnel do in the everyday life.”

While the Midshipmen were on board they had the opportunity to shoot a weapon, take part in an underway replenishment and serve an ice cream social along with completing the day-to-day duties of an enlisted Sailor.

“I was really nervous at first and I was unsure of what to expect,” said Midshipman 1st Class Christian Strong, an ROTC student at North Carolina State. “During my time here I stood watch on the bridge, watched the missile exercise, rode in a rigid hull inflatable boat and drove the ship during an underway replenishment. Over all, I had a fantastic time on the ship; it was more than I ever could have thought it would be.”

Midshipman 3rd Class Samuel Sorenson, a student of the U.S. Naval Academy, had similar feelings about his time on board.

 “I had a really good time here,” said Sorenson. “I didn’t think it was going to be as fun as it was, especially since we were going to be out to sea for so long but it turned out great.”

Ellis said the Midshipmen were able to see the difficulties of shipboard life while underway.

“I think they got a great experience while out to sea,” said Ellis. “They got a true encounter of what people do on ships; we didn’t cater to them or try to give them a fake experience so I think they got a really unique and honest experience and my hope is that they value that.”

Roosevelt is participating in the George H.W. Bush Group Sail to improve strike group interoperability and prepare for an upcoming deployment.

Press Release, August 13, 2013; Image: Navy