MARINE CORPS AIR STATION NEW RIVER, N.C. --
More than 100 Marines from across II Marine Expeditionary Force gathered for the fourth annual Vivian A. Holmes Female Marine Symposium at Marine Corps Air Station New River, N.C., March 26.
During the symposium, female Marines received informational classes, participated in guided discussions and attended an education-station fair to learn about issues directly related to female Marines and their families.
Female Marines of all ranks and ages gathered to build camaraderie, enhance their knowledge and network during the symposium, said guest speaker Betty Moseley-Brown, associate director of the Sector for Women Veterans with the Department of Veterans Affairs and president of the Women Marines Association.
“My favorite part about speaking at the symposium was seeing the revelation when Marines,” said Moseley-Brown. “I could see the lightbulbs going off in the Marines heads. It’s great because they are learning something new that they can take with them and share it with other Marines. That is the whole purpose of the event, to share information.”
According to Moseley-Brown, the symposium was created for female Marines and women veterans to learn about benefits and services to help them succeed as Marines and as veterans.
“Events like this are empowering for female Marines,” said Moseley-Brown, a native of Chambersburg, Pa. “It is easier to do something when you see that someone has been successful before. There are great role models all around and today is just a day for us all to get together and share ideas.”
The Marines went over several topics including, finances; V.A. benefits; internet safety; sexual responsibility; healthy relationships; nutrition; permanent change of station information; legal services; the Woman Marines Association and career choices.
"This is my first time attending an event like this," ," said Cpl. Heather Moore, an administration clerk with Headquarters and Headquarter Squadron at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, N.C. "Getting together with so many female Marines from all walks of the Marine Corps is truly an eye opening experience. The symposium was a great way for us to network and meet other Marines who have been where we are now and can offer tips and advice for success."
According to Moore, she would recommend other female Marines get involved in events like the symposium.
"I think the symposium was a unique experience that I look forward to attending again in the future," said Moore. "I hope the Marines who were at the event go back to their shops and share what they have learned with the Marines who could not attend because although as female Marines our numbers are small, when we stand by each other's side and encourage each other, we can all become better citizens and better Marines."