Where No Woman Has Gone Before…
By Sunaina Anand
Persistence, struggle and single-minded dedication guaranteed her breakthrough and success in a conventionally ‘white’ male dominated career, when Shanti Sethi became the first ever Indian-American woman to command a navy warship.
Until last year when Cmdr Sethi assumed command of the USS Decatur, no woman had commanded a US aircraft carrier strike group, which is equipped with surface-to-air-missiles and anti-submarine warfare systems. Even today there are only a handful of women in command of US Navy ships, as a majority (93 per cent) of these positions are controlled by men.
“It was frustrating,” she had said in a recent interview, “when the guys behind me in class were being commissioned to superior ships and I to an ammunition ship (not a very prestigious posting in the Navy)”
Being at the top of her class, working hard and still not making it, was exasperating for the commander, but her will power and resoluteness guaranteed her success.
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