Recruiting an empowered workforce: Top Navy civilian educates engineering students in opportunity

Naval Surface Warfare Center, Corona Division (NSWC Corona) Technical Director Dianne Costlow, SES, speaks to prospective students during the Engineering Scholars Day. NSWC Corona partners with academia, industry and others to enhance its technical capabilities and improve the quality and speed of products and services to the fleet. (U.S. Navy photo by Kevin Casey/Released)
April 25, 2019

POMONA, Calif. – Senior Executive Dianne Costlow, Technical Director of Naval Surface Warfare Center, Corona Division, welcomed hundreds of prospective students to the field of engineering at California Polytechnic University, Pomona, April 13, and reassured them they had chosen the right field.

“Engineering opens the doors to almost anything you want to do,” she said. “Your degree not only enables traditional engineering jobs like research, design, testing, integrated systems engineering, analysis and assessment, and sustainment engineering, but you can also pivot to program management, executive leadership, teaching, law, business, and just about anything you want to do.”

Costlow was the keynote speaker at Cal Poly Pomona’s Engineering Scholars Day, an annual event where prospective students toured the engineering labs, networked with department faculty and checked out the resource fair. Costlow provided insights into college and career success, and suggested that NSWC Corona – one of Riverside County’s largest science and technology employers – could be the right place to build a career after graduation.

“Just as you, your families and Cal Poly Pomona want you to be successful in earning your degree, I also have a vested interest in your career,” Costlow said. “I need the recruiting pipeline to stay strong so the Naval Surface Warfare Center Corona can continue to meet our mission: assessing the performance and readiness of Navy warfighting systems.”
Costlow said NSWC Corona, one of 10 surface and undersea warfare centers across the country and part of the larger NAVSEA organization, is hiring diverse and innovative scientists and engineers. The warfare centers employ approximately 25,000 people and serve as the Navy’s principal research, development, test and evaluation (RDT&E) assessment facilities for surface ship and submarine systems and subsystems. She added that Cal Poly Pomona was the first university to sign an Educational Partnership Agreement with NSWC Corona over 12 years ago.

Through partnerships like this, NSWC Corona actively hires STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) graduates from local universities and provides access to internships and tours of Navy labs. Within the last three years, NSWC Corona has hired close to 200 local graduates, including 60 from Cal Poly Pomona.

Recruiting the best and the brightest STEM graduates ensures NSWC Corona sustains its excellence in supporting the fleet and reaffirms the vital role that science, mathematics and engineering plays in the current and future capability of the U.S. Navy. NSWC Corona is home to four laboratories that analyze, measure and provide independent assessment of the Navy’s sophisticated weapon and combat systems. Employees receive hands-on experience with some of the Navy’s most advanced technologies and have access to mentoring, training and ongoing education to enable full professional growth.

As the nation demands increased naval readiness, as outlined in the Navy’s Design for Maintaining Maritime Superiority 2.0, NSWC Corona is adding to its workforce to support the fleet. Since 2013, the number of employees at NSWC Corona has grown nearly 70 percent and the base now employs 1,700 civilian, military and contractor personnel in Norco with an additional 1,800 at locations throughout the United States, such as Fallbrook and Seal Beach.

Costlow also shared seven lessons to live by to ensure college and career success:
• Seek out and listen to mentors and advisors.
• Take care of yourself.
• Work hard and have a plan.
• Be a good team player.
• Master effective communications.
• Be flexible and seize opportunities.
• Have fun!

To learn more about hiring opportunities at NSWC Corona, visit NSWC Corona Careers.