Desire to help others inspires career choice

As a sailor with a desire to help his shipmates, Seaman Harrison “Harry” Cox was well-suited to life as a maritime personnel operator (MPO) during his first trip to sea aboard replenishment ship HMAS Supply.

CAPTION: Seaman Harry Cox on board HMAS Supply during this year’s fleet certification period conducted off Australia’s east coast. Story by Lieutenant Yvette Goldberg. Photo by Able Seaman Jarryd Capper.

After joining Navy last year, Seaman Cox had the opportunity to assist the civilian population in Australian communities as part of domestic operations COVID Assist and Aged Care Assist.

Having completed high school in the small country town of Yackandandah, Victoria, which has a population of 700, Seaman Cox joined Navy through the gap year program.

“Navy gap year offered the best exposure to Defence careers available as you have opportunities to try many different roles,” Seaman Cox said.

Through sampling a variety of roles, Seaman Cox found that an MPO was the best choice for him.

“MPOs undertake human resources duties – dealing with people’s questions and concerns,” Seaman Cox said.

“I get a lot of satisfaction from helping other people so I knew this was the right job.

“Working in the MPO office aboard is something different for me. I was working alongside others, seeing what the job involved and learning a lot from working with a group of knowledgeable people.”

Seaman Cox said one of the big drawcards of a career in the Navy was travel.

“I was given the opportunity to train at HMAS Cerberus and travel within Australia in 2021 to help communities in need,” he said.

“I was posted to HMAS Kuttabul in Sydney for 2022.”

Seaman Cox is on a short-term posting in HMAS Supply to learn about performing his role at sea.

With the ship’s busy schedule, there has been a lot to experience.

“Every day aboard is different,” he said.

“Being surrounded by multiple frigates and a guided-missile destroyer was a great experience as was watching Supply doing interesting, new and challenging work every day.

“There are so many highlights of my short career in the Navy, but what sticks out in my mind is that I am always meeting interesting people and making new friends.

“The Navy has challenges – being flexible and ready to move quickly as something different is always happening was initially a hurdle, but I am getting used to it and it is definitely exciting.”

Seaman Cox enjoys many outdoor activities and plays AFL and cricket. He is keen to see where his interests and Navy career will take him.

He said he was considering exploring a path that allowed him to complete a Degree in Health and Fitness and progress to becoming a personal training instructor in Navy.

Seaman Cox said he was proud to be the second person in his family to join Navy.  His great-grandfather served in the Navy in World War 1.





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