Aneta Murphy, Student Veteran of the Month

Aneta Murphy in the Navy

Aneta Murphy spent 10 years in the U.S. Navy as a surface sonar technician.


By Shane Murphy

Ten years in the U.S. Navy taught Aneta Murphy about leadership, commitment and perseverance.

“My military experience and training have provided me with an excellent work ethic and leadership experience that I would not have been able to learn anywhere else,” said Murphy, a senior in applied psychology.

Murphy was a surface sonar technician, operating and performing maintenance on sonar systems, underwater fire control systems and supporting equipment on a surface ship. She was also responsible for undersea surveillance and aided in safe navigation and search-and-rescue operations. She used sonar equipment to detect, analyze and locate targets of interest.

Aneta Murphy

“My military experience and training has provided me with an excellent work ethic and leadership experience that I would not have been able to learn anywhere else,” says Murphy, a senior in applied psychology.

Murphy was stationed on the USS Vella Gulf CG 72, a Ticonderoga-class guided missile cruiser, based out of Norfolk, Virginia, where she deployed in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. She was also stationed at Naval Amphibious Base Little Creek in Norfolk and the Naval Ocean Processing Facility in Virginia Beach.

Murphy achieved the rank of Petty Officer Second Class (E-5). She was awarded two Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medals, three Good Conduct Medals, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Sea Service Deployment Ribbon, Navy Pistol Marksmanship Ribbon, Navy Rifle Marksmanship Ribbon, and the Enlisted Surface Warfare Insignia.

She left the military in 2013 to pursue her college education. She received her associate’s degree from Tidewater Community College in Virginia Beach while on active duty. She transferred to UIC in 2013 and will graduate next month from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences with a bachelor’s degree in applied psychology and a minor in sociology.

“Being at UIC allows me to be close to my family, as well as providing the opportunity to experience all the amazing things that Chicago has to offer,” she said.

Murphy is president of the Student Veterans Association and served as the group’s vice president. She is a member of Psi Chi, the international honors society in psychology, and a member of the Polish American Student Association. She’s a student blogger for I am UIC.

She received the Chancellor’s Student Service Award this month for her work with the Student Veterans Association. She volunteers with the group at the Anti-Cruelty Society, training dogs to make them more adoptable. She is an advocacy intern at Rape Victim Advocates, where she responds to emergency rooms in the Chicago area to provide support to sexual assault survivors.

In the fall she will attend Roosevelt University for a master’s program in clinical psychology. She wants to pursue her doctorate further from home.

“My plan for the future is to work in the mental health field with veterans at the VA hospital in Anchorage, Alaska,” she said.

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