NMCB-11 Build Lasting Partnerships in Chuuk, Micronesia

Story by Lt.j.g. William Mitchell, Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 11

Chuuk, Federated States of Micronesia- The school plans to use the building as a woodworking shop for the 875 students at Chuuk High School, enhancing the school’s curriculum and providing the students with general knowledge in trade skills.

Steelworker 3rd Class Richard Jones, assigned to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 11, Construction Civic Action Detail Federated States of Micronesia, receives a shell necklace at the opening ceremony of the Two Room classroom project, Aug. 9, 2018. (Photo by BU3 Yamilet Perez)


The Seabees coordinated with the Chuuk High School staff to ensure their needs were met, minimal disruptions occurred during school hours and that the project was completed in a safe manner.

In addition to the classroom, the Seabees provided military preparation tutoring to the students, taught practical medical skills to local professionals and completed several additional smaller construction projects all while immersing themselves in the local culture and strengthening relationships.

“We had the pleasure of building not only these projects but building relationships with the community and learning their culture and way of life,” said Builder 2nd Class Hilary Lemelin, Project Crew Leader.

Seabees assigned to Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 11, Construction Civic Action Detail Federated States of Micronesia, complete construction of the Two Room Classroom Project at Chuuk High School, Aug. 7, 2018. (Photo by BU3 Yamilet Perez)


The Seabees had the opportunity to attend local ceremonies, culture days at two different schools and multiple community clean-ups.

Builder 2nd Class Corey Hedman summed up the experience best when he said “from the moment we got here, we felt welcomed; everyone was so supportive of us and we established relationships we will never forget.”

The Seabees of NMCB-11 CCAD FSM’s efforts during their six month deployment were aimed to improve the quality of life for the students while strengthening Host Nation relationships, providing educational infrastructure improvements and displaying the U.S. commitment to the Federated States of Micronesia.

Graceful Enlet, Director of the Chuuk Department of Education, left, Theodore Pierce, Deputy Chief of Mission U.S Embassy to the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM), center left, Ignacio Stephen, Chuuk Government Chief of Staff, center right, and Builder Chief John Watters, assistant officer in charge, Construction Civic Action Detail (CCAD) FSM, cut the ribbon for the Two-Room Classroom project at Chuuk High School in Weno, Chuuk, officially signifying the opening of the building, Aug. 9, 2018. (Photo by BU3 Yamilet Perez)


NMCB-11 is homeported in Gulfport, Mississippi, and is part of the Naval Construction Force (NCF). They currently have personnel assigned to more than 15 locations world-wide performing a variety of missions in support of the Navy and the Department of Defense.

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