Tuesday, March 29, 2016

MC perspective: Shaping squidlets

Selfie with her first class. They look...lively.

I know I've said this a bunch of times but you really have to be ready for anything with this job. MC2 Veronica Mammina is the perfect example, as she was recently handed a major direction shift.

Assigned to Defense Media Activity, where I work, Mammina only made it a few months before the Navy called on her to fill an instructor spot over at the Defense Information School.

Talk about change, she went from producing multi media content for the Navy's premiere publication, All Hands Magazine, to teaching it to recruits right out of boot camp.

MC2 talked briefly about what it's like over at DINFOS and how she got to where she is now.

The newest crop of DINFOS instructors.

MAMMINA:  I'm going the through the certification process of becoming a a Navy A-School Instructor. There are 5 functional areas in the six-month course to become a Mass Communication Specialist (MC). I teach the last functional area (Multimedia) which I am ecstatic about. It was my favorite part of A-School when I went through so talk about coming full circle.

I'm in a team of about 6 instructors. We take turns teaching basic graphics design techniques while using vector & raster based software. I.e. Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, InDesign to name a few. We also touch on Dreamweaver and AfterEffects if students express interest.

I AM YOUR EYES: Teaching that stuff would terrify me. The only things I'm good at are writing conversationally and making videos.

MAMMINA: So far, it's been a lot of fun. The course slightly changed but for the better. I shadow the other multimedia instructors to get a better understanding of what's expected of the students and follow along on the graded assignments. How would I grade their work if I've never done it right?

I taught my first class today and watching 
the light bulbs go off is seriously amazing.

Though my days are typically from 0700 until 1700, I don't even think about time. I'm constantly learning and preparing lesson plans, writing down ideas. I taught my first class today and watching the light bulbs go off is seriously amazing. I'm glad I'm here and able to do this job.

Mammina on the flight deck of  USS Boxer.

I graduated from A School in 2012, motivated to get into the fleet, make rank, get my warfare pins and get a little salt on my shoulder (life on a ship is what the Navy is all about right?). I got 2nd pick in the class and got stationed at the amphibious assault ship USS Boxer (LHD 4) out of San Diego until November of 2015.

In my entire life I never worked as hard 
as I did on that ship during those three years. 

I experienced the maintenance/overhaul phase known as PMA, an eight-month deployment to the middle east/pacific ocean with about 2,000 embarked Marines, won Junior MC of the year in 2013 for the products I made (after one year of being on the ship) and some other awards.

The ship was an arduous duty but was very rewarding. After Boxer, I had a few choices of where I wanted to go after my sea tour and ultimately re-enlisted for 3 years for Defense Media Activity.

Mammina's going away present, drawn by MC1 Mark Logico

After a few months of loving DMA and learning about broadcasting and magazine publishing, I was offered a rare opportunity by my supervisors to fill a needed special-shore-duty billet as an instructor at DINFOS. I was nostalgic for a moment because I realized how much of an awesome experience I had as a student there, and

...I've always wanted to be a teacher 
so why now start now? 

It was hard leaving DMA, and felt kind premature, but definitely awesome to ultimately be working side-by-side with the instructors I had when I was at DINFOS 4 years ago, literally.

I AM YOUR EYES: I drove a couple of my instructors crazy...not sure I want to see them too soon.

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