PACIFIC OCEAN (NNS) -- A group of five business and industry leaders from southern California arrived aboard amphibious transport dock USS San Diego (LPD 22) via helicopter as part of the "Leaders to Sea" program, May 20.
The Leaders to Sea program, sponsored by Commander, Naval Surface Forces, is designed to provide influential community leaders, educators, and business and industry executives with insight into the daily operations of a Navy ship at sea.
While aboard, participants toured the ship, observed flight operations and amphibious assault vehicle operations, received special briefings on the ship's capabilities and had lunch with the crew.
"It was incredible; you think you know about the Navy but you don't really know much about it until you get out here and you get [to] see how everything works, and how the ship integrates with the other services," said Jared Amerson, chief operating officer of Temecula Valley Hospital. "It was super educational."
The visit to the ship also included observing anchoring and small boat evolutions, and visits to the galley and the ship's medical facilities.
Amerson, who was visiting a Navy ship for the first time, said it was interesting to see the ship's crew complete so many operations in such a short period of time.
"Since I'm in health care I was fascinated by the medical section of the tour and seeing their equivalent of the [intensive care unit] and operating rooms," said Amerson. "It was really neat to see that part of the ship."
Daniel Abrams, vice president of Southland Technology Inc., also visited the ship as part of the program and ate lunch with Cryptologic Technician (Technical) 2nd Class Alexander Zdun.
Abrams, who has visited other ships, said he was very impressed with the size of the ship and how efficiently the space was used for work and living arrangement.
"It was different to talk with somebody outside of the Navy and show them how we do business on a day-to-day basis," said Zdun. "Getting their perspective and seeing how impressed they were was a nice change."
The Leaders to Sea program gives participants a chance to experience Navy life firsthand and develop a greater understanding of the various missions performed by the Navy and Marine Corps on a daily basis. Participants are encouraged to share their experiences with family members, peers, co-workers, employees and other individuals in their respective areas of influence.
"I'm appreciative of everybody taking the time to get us out here and show us around and help us understand what they do on a regular basis," said Amerson.
San Diego is currently participating in a series of qualifications and certifications as part of the basic phase of training in preparation for future operations and deployments.
For more information, visit http://www.navy.mil/, http://www.facebook.com/usnavy/, or http://www.twitter.com/usnavy/.
For more news from USS San Diego (LPD 22), visit http://www.navy.mil/local/lpd22/.