KINGS BAY, Ga. (NNS) -- A junior Sailor assigned to the Fire Control Division aboard USS Florida (SSGN 728) blue crew was the first junior enlisted female to earn her enlisted submarine warfare pin, or "dolphins", as part as the ongoing integration of enlisted women in submarines.
Fire Control Technician 2nd Class Jasmine Kiernan-Rolen received her dolphins during a ceremony while Florida was underway conducting routine operations earlier this year.
In order to receive her dolphins, she was required to qualify as Petty Officer of the Deck, Topside Roving Patrol and numerous in-rate qualifications. Additionally, she was required to perform damage control functions and demonstrate proficiency in the various areas of submarining. She chose to have Fire Control Technician 2nd Class Jonathan Barkhurst, her blue crew shipmate, pin on her dolphins.
Kiernan-Rolen was converted from a surface Fire Control Technician and was recently stationed aboard the USS Hopper (DDG 70) in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii prior to being selected for submarine service.
"It feels incredible to be a part of such a tightly-woven community, and it's an honor to earn the right to wear the navy's first qualification pin. The guys here have been both tough but inspiring," Kiernan-Rolen said. "The environment created in the submarine community is one of immense pressure that made me want to be a part of the brotherhood. It impresses upon each submariner the weight of what it means to be ready to save each other's lives as we fight the ship. My dolphins are the item I am most proud of so far in my journey because they represent the trust my crew has in me."
"This is a significant milestone for the crew and for the Submarine Community. FT2 Kiernan-Rolen is an exceptional Sailor," said the Florida blue crew's Chief of the Boat, Electronics Technician Master Chief Neil Ford. "She has set the bar extremely high, not only being the first junior enlisted female to qualify onboard, but her commitment to qualify in six months. We have a talented, dedicated and hardworking crew and I am excited to see where the future takes us."
Kiernan-Rolen's commanding officer, Captain Brett D. Moyes, explained that the integration of women within his crew has been very smooth and successful. "We've been very fortunate to have received such a talented group of women. The crew of Florida Blue has proven, time and time again, that we are ready to support each other and are able to achieve success when faced with any and all challenges," Moyes said.
Florida was originally commissioned in 1983 as a trident ballistic-missile submarine, designed to launch intercontinental missiles and deliver nuclear warheads. In 2006 it became one of four Ohio-class submarines converted into guided-missile submarines by the Navy. It is the sixth U.S. Navy ship to be named after the state of Florida.
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