Each month we interview a member of the Academy Training Team for insight on how our training works, and as recognition for all the hard work that goes into training new members each and every week of the year!
This month, we’re sitting down with Fleet Captain Renos for an interview that ranges far beyond just Academy Training.
WOLF: Glad to be sitting down with you for another interview on our Community News. Our last interview was a two-parter, in November 2015. Since then, a lot has changed! Let’s start by talking about your participation in the Academy. How long ago did you get involved with the Academy Training Team, and what was it like getting started?
RENOS: I first started helping the Academy in 2012 when I started working on my requirements for Commander. My Captain nominated me to join the team and I was accepted. Back then there weren’t as detailed guides as there are now but I never felt lost. Since you generally begin by ghosting two classes, then acting as a mock cadet for at least two, but the time you try to your hand as first officer you’ve already seen it in action at least 4 times and that alone gives you a pretty good idea about what you need to do.
The Academy Commandant was also very supportive. I remember the first time I ever did a class as CO I was incredibly nervous and had a very difficult cadet but the Commandant was very supportive and able to help me with situation. It felt great knowing that they had my back and thankfully such cases are incredibly rare.
Everyone on their way to command has to participate in the Training Team as part of their promotion requirements. But you stayed and continued with the team even after being promoted. What kept you coming back?
There’s a lot to love about being a trainer. I enjoy being able to sim with other people from around the fleet that I don’t get to sim with day-to-day and love being able to share my passion for simming with new players. I still fondly remember my training class 5 years on, with Toni Turner as CO, Tracey Townson as FO and Alleran Tan mocking with the most hilarious Klingon I’ve ever seen. It was my first ever taste of roleplaying and it was such good fun! The experience for me as a cadet was really fantastic and I want to be able to give that to other new players joining us.
You’ve recently changed your command. You were the CO of the Darwin, and now you’ve been commissioned as the CO of the Andaris Task Force, a four-ship sim. Tell us more about your vision for the task force?
We’re going to be based in the Par’tha Expanse and our home station will be Deep Space 26. Fleet Captain Renos will be heading up the Andaris Task Force and the four ships assigned to it – including the Olympic Class USS Blackwell, NCC-58999 and the Intrepid Class USS Atlantis, NCC-74682 which are the two primary vessels. These two vessels will be staffed with PCs and PNPCs and they will often run missions independent of each other but sometimes will work on joint missions together, where appropriate. It’s not all that different to having two different away teams going to different locations with their own objectives. The crews will have the opportunity to meet up again and mix over shore leave so they aren’t going to be cut off from each other.
The other two ships in the Task Force, the Horizon Class USS Darwin, NCC-99312-A and the Defiant Class USS El Corazón, NCC-74220 will be staffed with PNPCs and NPCs and will be referenced from time to time, and may appear as a support craft in missions occasionally. We’ll get the sense of them being there and contributing to our goals in the region, but they won’t be in the lime light the same way the two primary vessels will be.
You ran a competition to choose the name for your new medical ship. What’d you land on after all the votes were in? And how are you feeling about the first medical ship in the fleet?
There was a tie between the USS Blackwell and the USS Solace. We did a tie-breaker poll restricted to the ship’s crew to determine which would be the winner. Since all the Darwin crew will be moving the Andaris Task Force and simming with the vessel, it felt like the most fitting way to break the tie (rather than simply doing so myself).
I am very excited about launching the first medical ship in the fleet. There has been healthy interest in it in the past and I’ve always been passionate about bringing something a little different to the fleet. Having served on different vessels and under different captains it’s given me some unique insight – each ship has been slightly different in style. Some ships favour shorter, more dialogue driven stories while others tend towards longer, descriptive posts. Some are more action orientated, others more scientific or diplomatic. For anyone who would like more medically focussed stories – there is now a place in the fleet offering that, so I think this is a great thing for the fleet.
As a member of the EC, the new Academy Commandant, a full-time commanding officer, and a participant in some other OOC roles, you’ve got a lot on your plate. Do you have any tips for the community on how to juggle so much at one time?
It’s all very well taking a lot of things on when you have a lull in your personal life and have a lot of time on your hands but you need to also consider what you could manage should the going get tough – because that’s when you’re going to start feeling stretched and possibly start to feel burnt out. I’ve always said it’s better to do one thing exceptionally well than take on half a dozen tasks and not do so well. I always consider very carefully what I can manage with a view to the long term and have dropped out of teams to lighten my OOC load when it’s been necessary. Whatever you do though, it’s important to prioritise your work and make sure that any OOC work you take on isn’t interfering with your ability to sim full time.
What does leadership mean to you?
It’s about setting a good example for others and being a good guide. It’s about providing a simming environment that is fun, and helping players to achieve their full potential whether they just want to learn how to write better stories or become captain of their own ship some day.
Thank you so much for your time — we’ll let you get back to training!