June 3, 2015
Aiken, S.C. - From as far back as Harry can remember, military service has been held as a patriotic duty by his family. This sense of allegiance has helped shape his family's legacy - a legacy that Harry hopes to carry forward.
"My family considers serving in the military a patriotic duty, which is steeped in tradition, helping to shape our family's integrity," Harry said. "We hold integrity true, and view it as something not to sell or compromise, and I have found everyone here in the Savannah River Remediation (SRR) family closely aligns with that concept." This concept has helped Harry feel a part of the SRR workforce and has helped him transition from life as a Soldier to life in the civilian world.
Last year, SRR began employing qualified veterans in part-time paid developmental jobs in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics, or STEM. Harry is one of those veterans and began working at SRR last October.
As part of this STEM internship program, veterans work about 20 hours per week while attending a degree-granting institution in the Central Savannah River Area. Harry attends Georgia Regents University pursuing a degree in Automated Information Systems and Technology.
Prior to returning to college and joining SRR part time as an SRR Cyber Security Analyst, Harry served his country through the U.S. Army for 25 years. Harry served well and honorably. During his last tour of duty in Iraq in 2008, Harry was wounded and returned home, but his sense of duty to country and fellow man was not swayed. Harry said, "I had a blessed military career in more ways than one. Serving in the military was a great experience, and I worked with great people."
After being wounded, Harry said having his faith and a sense of self-worth following military life allowed him to realize he can be a member of society. "We are all given tools and skill sets; I just had to reapply those skill sets."
One of the ways Harry decided to reapply his skill sets was by returning to the classroom to earn a degree. Harry finds that attending college and working at SRR affords him the opportunity to serve and contribute through the internship program which he enjoys immensely. "I am a member of a great team here at SRR. Everyone has made me feel a part of the SRR family," said Harry.
Harry's manager, Juli Joyner, said, "Harry is a brilliant ambassador for the STEM internship program."
Returning to the classroom has also given Harry the opportunity to interact and hopefully influence the younger generation.
"I believe in raising up our next generation," Harry said.
As Harry grew in the military, he went from a Private to Sergeant First Class. When taking on responsibilities and leadership roles, he said he felt a sense of ownership by owning his own integrity. He also noticed that there came a point in time when he went from being mentored, trained, taught and led to being the one to mentor, train, teach and lead. Officers were integral in growing him into his military leadership roles, and these roles helped grow Harry into post-military roles, shaping and defining every facet of his life.
As Harry moved forward in his military career, he tried to be an integral part of helping to shape other Soldiers. He recalled being in Iraq and going over paperwork and personal military history with a young Soldier. Harry laughed as he recalled the young soldier looking at him and saying, "You have been in the Army longer than I have been alive." But Harry went on to say how rewarding it was,14 months later, when this same young Soldier returned to him and said, "Sergeant, you taught me well. You taught me about leadership and mentorship."
Now, Harry says he tries to lead and mentor by being a good co-worker, fellow student, father and grandfather, sharing the values and mindsets taught by his father and the military and investing what he has learned. Harry likes to tell this generation coming up behind him, "What you sacrifice in time and effort now, you will reap when you are older, like me."
Harry said that his military career is not about the awards and decorations he has received from going into battle, it is about his faith and the positives he desires to put in a world that has so much negative.
As Harry finds himself part of the SRR workforce, a student in the classroom and watching his grandchildren grow, he hopes to continue his passion of pouring positives into the next generation, carrying forward the family legacy that he holds dear.
The Savannah River Site is owned by the Department of Energy. The SRS Liquid Waste contract is managed by Savannah River Remediation, LLC, which is composed of a team of companies led by AECOM with Bechtel National, CH2M and Babcock & Wilcox. Critical subcontractors for the contract are AREVA, EnergySolutions and URS Professional Solutions.
Point of Contact: Tina Melton email@example.com 803-208-1213