DVIDS – News – NSWC Philadelphia Division Pride Month Highlights Chemical Engineer Juniper Sweeney

Juniper Sweeney, a chemical engineer who uses both pronouns they/she, has worked at the NSWCPD for about three years. She currently lives in South Philly, but grew up in Cranford (near Newark) in North Jersey, and studied Chemical and Systems Engineering at Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, where she earned a Bachelor of Engineering in chemical engineering and a master of engineering in Systems Engineering in 2019.

“At this point, especially with the groups of queer people I surround in the city, Philadelphia feels like home,” she said.

Besides working, Sweeney has a deep love of singing and rock climbing, and she helps organize local lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) groups for both.

His division at NSWCPD supports ventilation, collective protection systems (CPS) and underwater life support systems, with Sweeney splitting primarily between atmospheric monitoring and atmospheric control. As an In-Service Engineering Officer (ISEA), she coordinates with the research and development (R&D) community for future systems and provides solutions to issues that arise for technology already in the fleet. She enjoys having the opportunity to travel for installation, training and troubleshooting, and has the unique experience of often being the first trans and openly queer person with whom many civilian and active duty colleagues have worked.

Sweeney was very well supported while working at the NSWCPD by Lisa Fittipaldi and Mike Grady, co-chairs of the LGBT+ A (Allies) Employee Resource Group (ERG), and her leaders in her division. Her supervisor Steve Ellner and her mentor Josh Manney were particularly helpful in navigating a new work environment. A college friend and former NSWCPD colleague assured him that the NSWCPD would be a safe and supportive place to work and transition, and it turned out to be the case.

“For me, Pride Month was a great first opportunity for her to use a different gender presentation, and each year gives new people a chance to connect with a visible and centered LGBT community. My Pride experience was celebratory, but that doesn’t mean its story was a riot (referring to the riots organized by members of the LGBT community against a police raid that took place at the Stonewall Inn in New York City on the 28th June, 1969,” Sweeney said.

She continued, “This June will be my first experience of Pride Month in Philadelphia due to the pandemic that canceled last year’s events, and I’m excited to be a part of it.”

The NSWCPD employs approximately 2,800 civil engineers, scientists, technicians and support staff. The NSWCPD team performs research and development, test and evaluation, acquisition support, and in-service and logistics engineering for non-nuclear machinery, ship machinery systems, and equipment and materials related for Navy surface ships and submarines. The NSWCPD is also the organization responsible for cybersecurity for all ship systems.

Date taken: 06.06.2022
Date posted: 06.09.2022 09:23
Story ID: 422294
Location: WE

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