Story by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Oscar Quezada

PACIFIC OCEAN – Twenty-eight Sailors assigned to USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) were promoted through the Meritorious Advancement Program (MAP) during an all-hands call, July 11.

MAP allows command leaders to recognize and reward personnel for superior job performance with advancement to the next pay grade.

Three Sailors were promoted to petty officer first class, seven to petty officer second class and 18 to petty officer third class. The various chains of command throughout John C. Stennis nominated their Sailors who were screened through multiple levels.

“MAP is a tool that we have to help Sailors in ratings that are harder to advance in,” said Master Chief Engineman Robert Zantow, from Gillette, Wyoming, a MAP board member.

Board members looked at Sailors who participated in community relations, furthered their education, or did things expected of someone at a higher pay grade when considering who to advance.

“Do what you got to do, always be on time and have a squared away uniform,” said Ship’s Serviceman 2nd Class Steven Ivan Perez, from Killeen, Texas, one of the 28 Sailors who were advanced. “You have to get out there, get your collateral duties, get in touch with some sort of command association, do volunteer work. All those things … make you stand out compared to everyone else and show that you went above and beyond.”

The announcement surprised some of the Sailors at the all-hands call.

“I felt happy that my hard work finally paid off,” said Hospital Corpsman 2nd Class Carly Marcum, from Jacksonville, Florida. “When I found out, I didn’t know what to think. It was just too good for words.”

John C. Stennis is currently participating in the Rim of the Pacific maritime exercise. Twenty-six nations, more than 40 ships and submarines, more than 200 aircraft and 25,000 personnel are participating in RIMPAC from June 30 to Aug. 4, in and around the Hawaiian Islands and Southern California. The world’s largest international maritime exercise, RIMPAC provides a unique training opportunity that helps participants foster and sustain the cooperative relationships that are critical to ensuring the safety of sea-lanes and security on the world’s oceans. RIMPAC 2016 is the 25th exercise in the series that began in 1971.

Providing a combat-ready force to protect collective maritime interests, John C. Stennis is on a regularly scheduled Western Pacific Deployment.

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