2014 Naval Academy graduation ceremonies

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Commissioning day at the United States Naval Academy is steeped in history and tradition. The class of 2014 paraded into the Navy-Marine Corps Stadium and a few hours later 1,068 Navy and Marine Corps officers were commissioned into the armed services. Around 30,000 family members and friends attended as their young men and women receive their diplomas and they rejoiced in the own unique ways.

By Pamela Wood, The Baltimore Sun

U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel encouraged the newest group of Navy and Marine Corps officers to form personal relationships with members of their units and stay humble as they serve in a time of transition for the military.

Speaking at the Naval Academy graduation and commissioning ceremony at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis on Friday, Hagel addressed the Class of 2014 for about 19 minutes, emphasizing the importance of their leadership to the fleet.

As the military comes out of 13 years of war – the longest in history, Hagel said – the new officers will shape the military’s future, he said.

In order to be successful leaders, Hagel offered three pieces of advice: forge bonds with the people you lead, understand people with different perspectives and practice humility as you lead.