Naureen Singh, a 26-year-old Indian American Sikh student and community organizer from Colorado Springs, Colorado, has been appointed as a second lieutenant in the United States Air Force.
This accomplishment makes Singh a second-generation Sikh American to serve in the armed forces as an officer, following her father, Colonel (Ret.) G.B. Singh, one of the U.S. Army’s highest-ranking Sikh Americans to keep his turban while serving active duty, stated a press release. He joined the army in 1979.
Singh, who first started the process to become an air force officer in 2016, was inspired by her father’s “commitment and courage to serve while keeping his Sikh articles of faith intact,” as per the press release.
“Even though I had a completely different set of struggles than my dad, I recognize that because of him and his sacrifices, I was able to move and push forwards. I hope that as a leader, I can continue to do the same for others about the opportunities that exist in public service, even if they never considered it in their realm of possibility,” Naureen, who is joining the Air Force Reserve and plans to continue to pursue her master’s degree in criminal justice at the University of Colorado at Denver, said.
She hopes to continue a career in public service and continue to educate communities of their rights and empower them to organize around issues they care about.
Singh was commissioned virtually May 22 in Alabama by her father via FaceTime. He also gave her initial oath of enlistment before she went through the training at the U.S. Officer Training School in Alabama.