Experience 'unforgettable' for junior officer

Published on LCDR Paul Flynn (author), LSIS Yuri Ramsey (photographer), SBLT Karl Hoopmann (photographer)

Topic(s): HMAS Arunta (F151), North East Asia Deployment

Midshipman Ashley Hill from Port Macquarie at HMAS Creswell. (photo: LSIS Yuri Ramsey)
Midshipman Ashley Hill from Port Macquarie at HMAS Creswell.

Growing up on the coast, and looking for a career travelling the world along with a healthy lifestyle, Midshipman Ashley Hill has certainly achieved some highlights since she joined the Navy in February 2015.
Born and raised in Port Macquarie and a member of numerous sports clubs and the local Youth Band in her younger days, Midshipman Hill completed all of her initial Navy training courses, and then joined HMAS Arunta for Phase II of her Maritime Warfare Officer training on the day the ship sailed for a four-month North-East Asian deployment.
Midshipman Hill said that she was looking for the opportunity to do something that she wouldn't get a chance to do anywhere else, to make a difference and work towards a bigger picture, and to be a part of global issues and international relations.
With Arunta visiting India, Malaysia, the Philippines, Japan, South Korea, China, Indonesia and then travelling down the east coast of Australia there was no shortage of opportunities to fulfill her aims.

Midshipman Ashley Hill with two cadets from the TNI-AL during a tour of HMAS Arunta.

Midshipman Ashley Hill with two cadets from the TNI-AL during a tour of HMAS Arunta.

"The trip has given me the opportunity to meet many influential people - including members of my own crew - and experience a wide variety of cultures whilst furthering my career as a naval officer," Midshipman Hill said.
"I have had the chance to participate in multi-national exercises with various countries whilst also making friends with the people I live and work with," she said.

The ship is scheduled to return to HMAS Stirling in mid-December, but will be stopping at Fleet Base East in Sydney on the way.

"I have my parents and family members meeting me at the wharf there, which will be very special and plan on having a catch up with everyone and sleeping in a bed rather than a rack!
"The small amount of time I have been in the Navy has already provided me with more experiences, adrenaline and opportunities than I could have wished for," Midshipman Hill said.
Looking ahead, her first goal is to complete her Maritime Warfare Officer training in either patrol boats or minehunters.

"I am ecstatic about getting amongst the small boat scene after just spending four months onboard an Anzac class frigate," she said.

But before that she has a few other important milestones to look forward to.
"We get back to Western Australia in time for my 20th birthday, Christmas and New Year - can't complain with that ending to an unforgettable trip."