SAN DIEGO – Petty Officer 1st Class Valeria Serrano, a native of El Paso, Texas, supports versatile missions while serving at at Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 3.

Serrano joined the Navy seven years ago. Today, Serrano serves as a yeoman.

“I joined the Navy because I desired growth, challenge and adventure,” said Serrano. “I wanted to be a part of something bigger”

Serrano attended El Paso High School and graduated in 2007.

Skills and values similar to those found in El Paso are similar to those required to succeed in the military.

“My hometown taught me to work hard, remain humble and have fun,” said Serrano. “I watched my mom while she was working. She instilled in us that we should always work hard, to be good at what we do and to remain humble no matter what situation we find ourselves in.”

These lessons have helped Serrano while serving with the Navy.

Members of HSC 3 fly and maintain helicopters for the U.S. Navy. Navy helicopters are able to perform many different missions. In general, some of the most common operations include search and rescue, air assaults, medical evacuations, supply transport and hunting submarines.

This year commemorates 50 years of women flying in the U.S. Navy. In 1973, the first eight women began flight school in Pensacola; one year later six of them, known as “The First Six,” earned their “Wings of Gold.” Over the past 50 years, the Navy has expanded its roles for women to lead and serve globally and today our women aviators project power from the sea in every type of Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard aircraft. Our Nation and our Navy are stronger because of their service.

As a member of the Navy, Serrano is part of a world-class organization focused on maintaining maritime dominance, strengthening partnerships, increasing competitive warfighting capabilities and sustaining combat-ready forces in support of the National Defense Strategy.

“The Navy is important to national defense by maintaining, training and equipping combat-ready naval forces capable of preserving peace around the world,” said Serrano.

With 90 percent of global commerce traveling by sea and access to the internet relying on the security of undersea fiber optic cables, Navy officials continue to emphasize that the prosperity of the United States is directly linked to trained sailors and a strong Navy.

Serrano and the sailors they serve with have many opportunities to achieve accomplishments during their military service.

“My proudest accomplishment in the Navy is earning Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron Wing Pacific Administration Person of the Year,” said Serrano. “I came here on limited duty orders because of an injury. I was the only yeoman at a command of close to a thousand people. It’s almost impossible to handle that workload. To me, earning that achievement meant that my command saw my hard work for the other sailors. It felt nice to be appreciated and recognized for that. I was not doing it just to do it.”

As Serrano and other sailors continue to train and perform missions, they take pride in serving their country in the United States Navy.

“Serving in the Navy means being challenged every day that allows me to constantly grow as a person,” said Serrano. “I wake up every day to do my best and help wherever I am needed.”

Serrano is grateful to others for helping make a Navy career possible.

“I would like to thank my mom and my sisters for their constant support,” added Serrano.