Had Sisko Always Been Command Track

Discussion in 'Deep Space Nine' started by Dingo, Dec 5, 2012.

  1. Dingo

    Dingo Captain Captain

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    Just out of curiousity I wonder had Captain Sisko always been a command track officer? Owing to the fact that he worked on the Defiant class ship, and had some time at Utopia Planetia, it led me to think he started out in Engineering or Operations before going command track.
     
  2. Smellincoffee

    Smellincoffee Commodore Commodore

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    He was in Engineering before a captain suggested he take up command. I think XO of the Saratoga was his first Command gig, actually.
     
  3. Jono

    Jono Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    ^ Sisko was XO on the Okinawa prior to the Saratoga.

    In "Paradise Lost" Leyton did comment that when he met Sisko that Sisko was more interested in engineering and starship design rather than command, which does suggest he might have been on a different tack.
     
  4. Mr. Laser Beam

    Mr. Laser Beam Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    Sisko was the Okinawa's chief engineer before he was the XO.
     
  5. t_smitts

    t_smitts Captain Captain

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    Michael Piller once said this in an interview:

    "It was harder to define Sisko as a character than perhaps any of the others, and ultimately it took us probably a season and a half to reach the conclusion that Sisko was a builder, a man who built things, stayed with projects, as opposed to the driver, the captain of a starship who went off and moved from place to place."


    If you look at Sisko's career, it's pretty consistent with that, even before they decided it. Between the Saratoga and DS9, he worked at Utopia Planitia, helping to design and build starships, including the Defiant. He helped restore and active community on DS9.

    In season 4, we learn he was once offered a civilian job on Earth building orbital habitats. In season 7 he talks about building a house on Bajor.

    If Sisko was around today, I imagine he'd be an engineer or an architect.
     
  6. TheRoyalFamily

    TheRoyalFamily Commodore Commodore

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    He also built that Bajoran sail ship. By himself. From ancient blueprints that he himself deciphered. For fun.
     
  7. The Librarian

    The Librarian Commodore Commodore

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    Also, there probably isn't any such thing as "command track". All officers are, by definition, command track unless it's a staff position like medical or maybe science. Otherwise they wouldn't be officers.
     
  8. Nerys Myk

    Nerys Myk Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    That's probably what "command track" means. An officer that isn't part of a "specialty" like medical, science or engineering. COs most likely tend to come from security, tactical and flight control. All officers probably have some sort of "command" training in the sense that they would need that to supervise junior officers and enlisted men, but that wouldn't mean they were command material.
     
  9. Nerys Ghemor

    Nerys Ghemor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    In the real-life military, there is a difference between being an officer of the line versus a specialized officer (such as medical or JAG--referred to in the Air Force as a "professional" officer).

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Officer_of_the_line

    One example of this is that in TNG, Dr. Crusher is a full commander, but with only one exception, she is not seen to take command, and if she does pull rank, it's normally restricted to a medical context under her powers as CMO.

    By the description in the article, it might be that Sisko has sometimes been an officer of the line, and sometimes not--but even that article makes clear that sometimes the distinction is blurred.
     
  10. Nerys Myk

    Nerys Myk Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    It's possible, that like Scotty, he was second officer and chief engineer.
     
  11. snakespeare

    snakespeare Commander Red Shirt

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    Great point!

    One exception to this, in the Navy, is command of medical ships, which does go to Captains of the Medical Corps. So Dr. Crusher's command of a science vessel does have precedence in real life.
     
  12. Nerys Ghemor

    Nerys Ghemor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I'm not arguing that. ;)

    Similarly, if there was a period when Sisko was not a line officer, perhaps he commanded a Starfleet Corps of Engineers unit or even an SCE ship.
     
  13. Pavonis

    Pavonis Commodore Commodore

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    When would Sisko have had a chance to command a Corps of Engineers unit?

    When we were introduced to him, he was already a lieutenant commander, and executive officer of a starship. We learned in "Home Front" that he was also previously an executive officer on a different starship (presumably, but not definitely, at lieutenant commander). We know his whole career after that. So, where was he before the Okinawa?

    We know that Sisko, as an ensign, was also involved in whatever Curzon Dax was doing, presumably something involving diplomacy and somehow involving the starship Livingston. Perhaps providing security as a personal bodyguard? Why else would a young officer be involved with a fiesty diplomat? Was he in some kind of mentorship program for command-track junior officers?

    We don't really know what Sisko was doing when he was a lieutenant, but had to have been engineering, and it is probable that he was an engineering officer on the Okinawa as a lieutenant, maybe he was the chief engineer. Then Leyton made him his XO, and the rest is history....
     
  14. Nerys Ghemor

    Nerys Ghemor Vice Admiral Admiral

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    In the real-life Navy, it's possible for officers to have small ship commands before the rank of captain. So it's not impossible. :)
     
  15. C.E. Evans

    C.E. Evans Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I've always taken the position of Sisko originally being from Starfleet's operations division (operations, engineering, security, tactical) and then transferring to the command division.
     
  16. Mark_Nguyen

    Mark_Nguyen Commodore Commodore

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    It's probably better to think about what Sisko's division was, because everyone IS on the command track in some way - just not necessarily towards command of a Starship or other facility. LaForge was in the command division for a while, but switched to Engineering where he commands that section.

    I also thought that Sisko was in the Engineering division, perhaps on track to become chief engineer of something at some future point. Then Layton recognized real command qualities in him, and convinced him to become his XO aboard the Okinawa. The rest is history - though it does seem a bit of a demotion to go from XO of an Excelsior-class ship to the relatively humble Saratoga afterwards. Was it the next available XO posting after Layton got promoted to Admiral? Was the Okinawa lost or decomissioned? Otherwise why wouldn't Sisko stay as XO there?

    Mark

    Mark
     
  17. Pavonis

    Pavonis Commodore Commodore

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    Riker was XO on three ships before taking his own command, so Sisko's service on two ships as XO makes sense. As for the Saratoga being a step "down" from his previous service on the Okinawa, well, we don't know what class the Okinawa was, and there's no reason to think that a Miranda-class vessel is less prestigious than an Excelsior-class.
     
  18. Mark_Nguyen

    Mark_Nguyen Commodore Commodore

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    That's fair. I was going on Okinawa's listing as an older Excelsior in print media. Not to say that Saratoga would HAVE to be a step down, but it would be a smaller and arguably less capable ship. Possibly a newer one, though, and Sisko may simly be okay getting experience on a variety of ships and bases on his way to command of his own.

    Mark
     
  19. Pavonis

    Pavonis Commodore Commodore

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    The mission profile and the personnel would have to be considered, too. The Vulcan captain of the Saratoga may have been a prestigious officer with which to serve. And who knows what the original mission of the Saratoga was. Presumably something safe enough to have at least the XO's family aboard.
     
  20. TheRoyalFamily

    TheRoyalFamily Commodore Commodore

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    It may be that being XO of a smaller ship lets said officer interface with the crew more, be more personally involved with them, rather than what appears to happen on a large ship, where the XO is basically the captain's personal assistant/bodyguard.
     

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