KITTERY – It’s graduation day at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard.

Sen. Jeanne Shaheen is the keynote speaker as 122 graduates are recognized after completing four-year and five-year apprentice programs at the shipyard that repairs and overhauls nuclear submarines.

The shipyard’s commander, Capt. Dave Hunt, said it’s an immense responsibility to work on such technologically sophisticated warships. He said the work is “precise, exacting, and demands the highest of standards.” There are currently more than 1,000 participants in the apprenticeship programs.

In the past, the program earned the attention of former Vice President Joe Biden and Labor Secretary Thomas Perez who visited the shipyard to see firsthand.

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