PEARL HARBOR, Hawaii -- The Tripler Army Medical Center Junior Officer Council held a "Meet and Greet" Officer Professional Development luncheon with Col. Glenda Lock, deputy commander for nursing, Pacific Regional Medical Command and TAMC, June 23, at the Seven Palms Bar and Grille at the Navy-Marine Clubhouse, here.

More than 50 junior Army Nurse Corps officers from TAMC and U.S. Army Health Clinic-Schofield Barracks assembled for an afternoon of professional development, team building, mentorship and networking. The junior ANC officers were delighted to have the opportunity to get to know their DCN in a more informal setting.

Lock openly spoke about her personal experiences beginning with her route of entry into the ANC as a direct commissionee. She emphasized the importance of perseverance and adapting to changes in regards to personal career endeavors.

Lock offered the junior officers her coined phrase "stand in the door," to always be ready to embrace future challenges and opportunities that may arise.

"It is vital to make sure your leaders are aware of your goals and that you are willing to exceed the standard to accomplish those goals," Lock said.

Many of the junior officers in attendance expressed that they gained an immense insight and motivation from the words of wisdom provided by Lock.

"Hearing about Col. Lock's experiences, challenges and successes encouraged me to continue to strive for my goals and reminded me that anything is possible as long as you are willing to be mentored and coached, and willing to continue to expand your knowledge and strive to be the best in your profession," said 2nd Lt. Ashley Jefferson, who works in the Mother and Baby Unit at TAMC.

Attendees are looking forward to future JOC events and recommend them to nurses of all experience levels.

"I am looking forward to the next Junior Officer Council officer professional development. I think it's beneficial for both the new nurse and the 'seasoned' nurse," explained 1st Lt. Rachelle Axtell, who works in the general surgery ward at TAMC. "As a new nurse you need to feel supported, and as a nurse who has been in the field a few years it is important to share the insight and experiences you've had."

The JOC has recently campaigned for new members in an attempt to revamp the program and expand its impact on the junior officers stationed in Hawaii.

JOC's executive officers are thrilled about the revitalization of the JOC and feel its reinstatement will be valuable for AMEDD officers in Hawaii.

"Professional development, mentorship and coaching are priceless commodities that we do not take for granted," said Capt. Tanekkia Taylor-Clark, president, JOC. "We plan to continue to provide a platform for junior AMEDD officers to grow, network, and positively contribute to our community."

(Editor's Note: 1st Lt. Amber Chiapuzio is the Tripler Junior Officer Council historian.)