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Profile Overview

Rhonda Iwelu

Human Female

Character Information

Assignment

Chief Science Officer
Starbase Bravo

Rank

Captain

Born

Dr. Rhonda Iwelu

January 6, 2350 (age 50)

Alpha Centauri

Summary

Dr. Rhonda Iwelu (born January 6, 2350) is a Starfleet Captain currently serving as the Chief Science Officer of Starbase Bravo and Associate Director of Fourth Fleet Science. While Dr. Iwelu is a seasoned officer with years of experience serving on starships, she is best known for her work as a researcher and educator with the Daystrom Institute. She has published numerous papers in the field of astrophysics, she has mentored countless post-graduate scientists, and she is often called upon to advise the Federation Science Council.

Appearance

History

Rhonda was born on Alpha Centauri in a small suburb of the planet’s capital city. Raised in her parent’s restaurant, she spent her childhood surrounded by food and people. She learned every part of the family business, from preparing meals to waiting tables. Her parents laid out a plan for her future the minute she was born, and as an only child she was expected to carry her family’s legacy.

As a student, Rhonda was gifted but often failed to apply herself, wasting most of her primary and secondary education. It wasn’t until a field trip to Earth that Rhonda saw a different future for herself as a Starfleet officer. Nobody from her town thought of applying for Starfleet,1 and she kept her intentions hidden until she took the entrance exams and was accepted to the academy. Her parents, although proud, were sad to see her leave for Earth – especially when all of her classmates remained on Alpha Centauri.

The Academy was a culture shock for Rhonda. She went from a small community, knowing every name and face, to feeling like one number among thousands. Her experience in her parents’ restaurant made it easy for her to make friends, and even helped her find mentors in her professors. She’d spent such a long time in her parents’ shadow that she didn’t know exactly what career she wanted, so she spent her first two years trying different specialties. She eventually settled on a double concentration in physics and quantum engineering. After graduation, instead of requesting assignment directly aboard a starship, Rhonda opted to continue her education and pursue a higher degree.

After only a year in her advanced studies, the Dominion War began and Rhonda was transferred to active duty. She was apprehensive about serving on a starship so soon, especially since she was made an engineer instead of a science officer – which she would have preferred. But she understood that, during wartime, an engineer was more valuable than a scientist in the field. She was assigned to the Nebula-class USS Melbourne, which saw consistent action on the frontlines. Near the end of the war, Rhonda was severely injured by a blown EPS conduit and was told by doctors that she’d be unable to have children. The news devastated Rhonda, who spent the remainder of the war in a hospital bed.

Once the war ended, Rhonda was promoted and requested a transfer to the reserves while she evaluated her future in Starfleet. She returned home to Alpha Centauri and spent time with her parents. She went back to working at the restaurant and became known as the community’s war hero. She disliked all the attention she received, and she also wasn’t ready to give up her future as a scientist. She eventually began studying part-time at the University of Alpha Centauri to finish her doctorate. After spending four years at home, Rhonda decided she’d give Starfleet another chance, and her advanced degree meant she’d have her pick of assignments.

In 2379, Rhonda became the Chief Science Officer of the Intrepid-class USS Pioneer. She found a new appreciation for Starfleet’s work during their 5-year mission of deep space exploration. As lead scientist, she often determined the ship’s missions and had dozens of opportunities to make scientific breakthroughs in her field of astrophysics. At the conclusion of the Pioneer’s mission, Rhonda was offered a promotion to Chief Science Officer of the Galaxy-class USS Magellan.

The Magellan was a prestigious posting, and as a Galaxy-class its scientific capabilities were unmatched by anything else in the fleet. Rhonda led an entire division of science departments, and the role of the Galaxy-class meant the Magellan spent most of its time in deep space, charting new sectors and making first contact with new species. In 2385, after only a year on the Magellan, they were recalled to Federation territory because of the Attack on Mars. Rhonda hoped that the recall would only be temporary, so she waited patiently while the Magellan was relegated to visiting core worlds and showing the Starfleet’s strength.

By 2390, however, the Magellan still had not returned to deep space and Rhonda decided that a starship wasn’t the right fit anymore. She looked for other postings on starbases and research outposts, but an offer from the Daystrom Institute of Astrophysics was too good to pass on. Although the research opportunities were enticing enough, the main reason why she accepted was the chance to mentor and educate future scientists. She knew one day Starfleet would return to exploration, and she did her best to equip her students with all the skills they’d eventually need.

Rhonda’s time with the Daystrom Institute were some of the most rewarding years of her life. While her independent research was impressive, she spent more time supervising and co-authoring papers with students than any other professor in the department. This earned her recognition from not only the institute, which promoted her to Captain with the title of Associate Professor, but also from the Federation Science Council, who often called on Rhonda for advice.

Seeing Starfleet finally return to exploration in 2399, Rhonda quickly sought a posting in the field and away from Earth. Her high rank, paired with her lack of command experience, meant that most assignments on a starship were unavailable to her. The best position she was eligible for was as Chief Science Officer of Starbase Bravo, where she’d oversee an entire division with thousands of civilian and Starfleet scientists. Her posting on Starbase Bravo also came with an appointment to Fourth Fleet Science as one of many Associate Directors. Despite it being a position that mostly saw her filing out paperwork, she enjoyed being the first to read field reports and having more opportunities to mentor young officers.

Service Record

Date Position Posting Rank
2399 - Present Chief Science Officer Starbase Bravo
Captain
2396 - 2399 Associate Professor Daystrom Institute
School of Astrophysics
Captain
2390 - 2396 Assistant Professor Daystrom Institute
School of Astrophysics
Commander
2384 - 2390 Chief Science Officer USS Magellan
Galaxy-class
Lieutenant Commander
2379 - 2384 Chief Science Officer USS Pioneer
Intrepid-class
Lieutenant
2375 - 2379 Doctor of Philosophy
Astrophysics
University of Alpha Centauri
Lieutenant Junior Grade
2373 - 2375 Engineering Officer USS Melbourne
Nebula-class
Ensign
2368 - 2373 Bachelor of Science
Physics, Quantum Engineering
Starfleet Academy