On 10 June 2022, when the Day of the Armed Force was celebrated in the Gaeta bay, in Newport, in the US state of Rhode Island, two officers of the Navy graduated from the Naval War College of the US Navy, the oldest and most prestigious Institute for the development of maritime strategic thinking that since 1884 trains the officers of all the US Armed Forces and of the allied and partner countries of the United States.
College President, Rear Admiral Shoshana Chatfield conducted the graduation ceremony in the presence of the Secretary of the United States Navy, Hon. Carlos Del Toro.
The vessel captain Stefano Donno and the corvette captain Marta Pratellesi completed the 11-month course brilliantly, attending the Naval Command Course and the Naval Staff Course respectively, together with 120 officers representing numerous international Marines.
During the ceremony, which was also attended by the naval attaché in Washington, Captain Gianfranco Vizzini, Commander Pratellesi was awarded the prize by the Secretary of the United States Navy Admiral Arleigh A. Burke for Academic Excellence.
This award is given to the officer with the best academic results among all international students who obtain the diploma of University Master in Defense and Strategic Studies. The commander Pratellesi has also obtained this qualification, foreseen only for US students and for a small part of international ones, with a special honorable mention. It is the first time that an Italian Navy student has access to this US Navy Master's program and achieves an achievement of this level.
Numerous foreign officers attend the Naval War College each year as well as 600 students belonging to the various US Armed Forces, Agencies and Government Departments. During the courses, issues relating to national, regional and global security are discussed, historical cases are reviewed and current international issues are analyzed from a strategic point of view, with particular reference to the use of the military instrument in the field Joint and Combined.
The experience of studies at the Naval War College therefore provided Commander Donno and Commander Pratellesi not only with new academic knowledge but also an international perspective vision obtained thanks to the constant comparison with the US and international Marine personnel attending the course.