NEW CUMBERLAND, Pa., –
Before her assignment with the Harrisburg Recruiting Battalion in New Cumberland, Pennsylvania, Staff Sgt. Shanee Bowman never gave much consideration to becoming a warrant officer.
However, both her commander and section officer-in-charge were impressed with the human resources technician's technical knowledge and knew she had potential.
With her leaders’ encouragement, Bowman decided she wanted to become the subject matter expert in her field and to lead and guide Soldiers as a warrant officer. Three years later, Bowman is now a graduate of Warrant Officer Candidate School and proud to wear the rank of warrant officer 1.
“This is something that I really wanted, and it was a goal of mine,” Bowman said. “So to actually accomplish that meant so much to me.”
It wasn’t an easy journey for Bowman, though, because she had to raise her general technical score to meet the requirements for becoming a warrant officer. She started studying for the exam while working full time, raising two young boys and taking classes for her master’s degree. After taking the test twice without success, she said she became discouraged but didn’t give up. She hired a tutor and studied morning, noon and night.
Still, Bowman was hesitant to take the test again, fearing she wouldn’t pass a third time. With a little encouragement from her mentor, she called and scheduled the exam. It turned out the third time was the charm.
“When I finally passed the test, I just literally broke down and cried in the office because the past three years had kind of been a struggle,” Bowman said. “It was just a burden off of my shoulders.”
Bowman will attend Warrant Officer Basic Course at Fort Jackson, South Carolina, and continue to her next assignment at Joint Base Lewis-McChord.
Bowman said she is thankful for her time spent working under the United States Army Recruiting Command at the Harrisburg Battalion and will take what she’s learned to help develop her next shop and be a better leader to her Soldiers.
“This has been a great experience for me being here, and I’m really going to miss it because I feel like I’ve developed so much,” Bowman said. “I came here as an E5 (sergeant), and I am leaving here as a WO1. To me, that is a great accomplishment.”
While Bowman admitted she probably wouldn’t have made the transition to warrant officer without the mentorship she received, she said it’s important to go for what you want and make the most of your career.
“Do not give up because only you can have control over your own career,” she said. “So just go for your goals, go for your dreams and just don’t let anybody tell you that you can’t do it.”