April 30, 2014
CHICAGO – UIC softball’s Erica Hampton was recently accepted into the U.S. Navy’s Nuclear Propulsion Officer Candidate (NUPOC) Program, one of the most accomplished nuclear-power programs in the world. Hampton, a junior, will begin her training with Officer Candidate School (OCS) in January 2016 after earning her degree at UIC.
“It is an incredible honor to be accepted into the program,” Hampton said. “I am looking forward to applying what I have learned from being an athlete here at UIC, as well as an electrical engineering student, to my job as a Nuclear Propulsion Surface Officer for the U.S. Navy.”
Following completion of OCS and an initial sea tour, Hampton will embark on advanced nuclear power training, which includes an academic curriculum (Naval Nuclear Power School), comparable to top nuclear programs at Harvard and MIT, and practical training (Nuclear Power Training Unit), before going on a second sea tour.
Once qualified as a Surface Warfare Officer, Hampton will serve aboard nuclear aircraft carriers/surface ships. She will oversee personnel and the operational intricacies of the onboard nuclear reactor and propulsion plant.
“We are all so proud of Erica for this amazing accomplishment,” head coach Michelle Venturella said. “I love that she had the courage to pursue this lofty goal and reached it. She is one of the few women in the NUPOC program and is paving the way for others to follow.”