Rep. Tim Scott (R-Charleston) told graduates at the Nuclear Power School on Friday that he needed their help.
"Now that you men and women know how to deal with toxic challenges, I need you to come to Washington, D.C., because we have a lot of toxic situations that cause me great concern," he said, to laughter.
Scott was the guest speaker at the graduation of 409 sailors at the Naval Nuclear Power Training Command. The officers and enlistees have spent the past 24 weeks in the classroom, learning about the Navy's nuclear power program.
The next step before service on a submarine involves an additional 24 weeks at the Nuclear Power Training Unit, where students receive hands-on lessons on Navy submarines out of service at Joint Base Charleston — Weapons Station, or at a sister facility in New York.
Scott spoke seriously about his commitment to preserving the budget for the Department of Defense.
"We must make sure the resources necessary to fight the good fight are in your hands," he said. "That the technologies that keeps you safe and motivated are in your hands … that when you finish your career, that the promises made are the promises that we keep for all those folks who serve this great nation."
Top graduates at the ceremony included Officer Class Honorman Lt. (junior grade) Henry Donaghy, Second Officer Ensign Jeffrey Baluch and Third Officer Ensign Dennis Hugo, as well as Enlisted Class Honorman ET3 James Jacobs, Top Electrician's Mate EM3 David Penner, Top Electronic's Technician ET3 James Jacobs and Top Machinist's Mate MM3 Jonathan Chou.