Recio Earns Military Excellence Award at Recruit Training Command

Story Number: NNS190208-09Release Date: 2/8/2019 11:56:00 AM
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By Alan Nunn, Recruit Training Command Public Affairs

GREAT LAKES (NNS) -- Seaman Recruit Jasmine Recio, Division 914, graduated as the top Sailor from Recruit Training Command, earning the Military Excellence Award, Feb. 8.

Recio, from Upland, California, said she joined the Navy to honor and protect the values she learned from her family.

“As a first-generation American, my family raised me on the importance of the freedom and democracy that they gained when they sought refuge from a communist regime in Cuba,” Recio said. “I was able to differentiate the causes and effects of their past and understood why they are all so proud to be where they are in life. Their struggles have inspired me to continue to show my patriotism and serve all those in need around the world.”

Recio, 22, graduated from Upland High School in Upland, California. She attended Chaffey College in Rancho Cucamonga, California while pursuing a degree in human physiology.

Recio is assigned the rate of Machinist’s Mate (Nuclear).

The Navy Club of the United States Military Excellence Award is the top award presented to the No. 1 recruit of their graduating training group. The MEA is awarded to the recruit that best exemplifies the qualities of enthusiasm, devotion to duty, military bearing and teamwork. The award placed her at the pinnacle of today’s newest Sailors. Recio is awarded a flag letter of commendation.

Recio said she was honored to receive the MEA.

“I’ve been bestowed one of the greatest honors an RTC graduate can achieve, and having been compared against countless of other talented and motivated recruits in my training group, I consider it a blessing,” she said.

By earning the MEA, Recio said she is inspired and challenged by what lies ahead.

“It motivates me to do so much more with my oncoming naval career,” she said. “What else can I achieve? This is validation that making some challenging decisions, getting out of comfort zones, and living by the Navy Core Values can have an impact on mental and physical performance. Just because you may not see the change in yourself, doesn’t mean that others around you don’t recognize and appreciate your efforts.” 

Recio credited her Recruit Division Commanders, Senior Chief Sonar Technician (Surface) Joseph Meadors, Culinary Specialist (Submarine) 1st Class Marcus Smith and Ship’s Serviceman 1st Class Ana Marrerosuarez for their leadership and guidance.

“Senior Chief Meadors showed me how to act professionally and responsibly in uniform by representing that himself every day of training,” Recio said. “Petty Officer Smith taught me resilience. He also taught me that showing no reaction can be the most powerful response to a challenging situation. Petty Officer Marrerosuarez challenged me as a female leader and always showed that she wanted what was best for every single recruit.”

Recio said she was appreciative of her RDCs’ dedication.

“My RDCs spent more time with my division these past eight weeks than their own families,” she said. “Their sacrifice is represented by the quality of Sailors that they are putting out into the fleet.”

Recio said her most challenging part of boot camp came during the first week at in-processing.

“There are so many unknown variables along with being in a living space with about 90 other females from all around the globe,” she said. “Their diverse backgrounds and personalities made for a rough transition from civilian to Sailor, but as a team, we learned that Sailors are responsible for one another, no matter what.”

After graduation, Recio will attend Nuclear Machinist’s Mate “A” School in Charleston, South Carolina. She will then go to Nuclear Propulsion School and finally Prototype School.  Machinist Mate duties in nuclear propulsion plants include operating reactor control, propulsion and power generation systems. Recio will be able to choose between serving on an aircraft carrier and volunteering for submarine duty.

Boot camp is approximately eight weeks and all enlistees into the U.S. Navy begin their careers at the command. Training includes physical fitness, seamanship, firearms, firefighting and shipboard damage control along with lessons in Navy heritage and core values, teamwork and discipline. More than 35,000 recruits graduate annually from RTC and begin their Navy careers.


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