Start Here Grow Here | From apprenticeship program to workforce development manager

Harron Wise Shgh

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Ingalls Shipbuilding Product Training Manager Harron Wise left the military in 1984, unsure about the next chapter in his life. With his mother, grandmother and aunts all having worked at Ingalls, it seemed like a natural next step. 

“When I got out of the military, I really didn’t have a transferable skill,” Wise said. “An opportunity came up to get into the welding apprenticeship and I jumped on it.”

Wise excelled in the apprenticeship program, finishing in 1991 as runner up for Apprentice of the Year. 

Through hard work and perseverance, Wise learned his craft and began helping others, showing leadership skills that helped him advance. He became a welding supervisor, then was offered a position as a training instructor in 1994. 

Twenty-eight years later, he’s still teaching shipbuilders. Wise now manages the West Bank training school, running upgrade certifications for the entire shipyard.

“I help shipbuilders who need their certifications redone, whether they’re just getting into metal work or need to recertify,” he explained.  

Coming from a military family, teaching and training the shipbuilders of tomorrow motivates Wise to stay dedicated to Ingalls’ mission and purpose. 

“I now have one son out here as a designer in engineering, and I have one son that works civil service with the Navy,” Wise said. “So coming out here, even though you’re not active duty, you’re still working to support the military.”

Like his name suggests, Wise has some words of encouragement and advice for new shipbuilders looking to advance their careers.

“Come to work every day. Come to work on time. Always look for ways to learn and to do better, and take every opportunity that comes your way.”

Map out your future at HII to help grow the career you want. For more information about job opportunities at HII, visit  


Danny Hernandez

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