The Israel Navy is taking its search for future submarine crew members, who will operate three soon-to-be operational new generation Dolphin-class vessels, to Israel’s high schools.
Maj. Yisrael (last name withheld), who runs the Navy’s high school outreach program, said the arrival of the new submarines and the need to fill them with new crew members led the navy to begin reaching out to 11th graders to get them to apply for Navy service.
“To serve in submarines is unique. Not many have experienced it,” Yisrael said. “The service is very challenging, and there’s an atmosphere of mutual support. You can be positioned at a destination and monitor it for days without anyone knowing. The information you bring serves the entire military.
“You might read things in newspapers [about events], but can’t say you were there,” he continued. “This is all-important work but it won’t be publicized and submarine crew members can’t tell anyone what they do.”
In 2014, the INS Tanin – the fourth German-made Dolphin-class submarine, will enter the navy’s service. A few months later, the INS Rahav will join the fleet. The sixth new generation Dolphin is still being manufactured at a German shipyard.
“This is the second year that we’re running the program,” Yisrael said. “The students will get a chance to ride rubber dinghies and encounter the submarines in the deep sea, where they’ll meet veteran crews. We’re aiming for people who may not have considered serving in the submarines.”
Fifty-four high school students joined the five-day program this year, compared to 34 last year. The program, based at the Naval Instruction Base at Haifa Bay, includes simulators and courses on the types of submarines in service.
Yisrael estimated that some 30 percent of those attending the pre-military course will reach the navy’s training course phase after enlisting.
View original Jerusalem Post publication at: http://www.jpost.com/Defense/Navy-seeks-teenage-submarine-recruits-for-Dolphin-class-vessels-321323