USS JOHN C. STENNIS, at sea (NNS) -- Nearly 1,000 Sailors aboard the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74)enrolled in college classes held aboard the warship during John C. Stennis University's (JCSU) first term of 2009, which started Jan. 21.
The program allows Sailors to work on earning a college degree during their deployment.
"The enrollment for term one is more than double what it has been in the past," said Education Boss Susan Epstein. "I am excited about the Sailors' response and am happy to be part of it all."
JCSU has six instructors to teach 13 courses offered during the first term. Courses range from basic math and English to advanced history, business and criminal justice.
Epstein credits the large increase in enrollment to the variety of classes offered, the ship's commitment that its Sailors get an education and the individual Sailors' motivation to be productive this deployment.
Having professors aboard motivated some Sailors to enroll because they wouldn't have to deal with the restricted internet access issues presented by taking classes online.
"I don't take internet classes because the internet is inconsistent," said Yeoman Seaman Sheldron Johnston, who plans on taking business management and college algebra. "So, I wouldn't be going to school if I wasn't in JCSU."
JCSU's flexible class schedule allows Sailors to fit school into their daily work and watch schedules.
"When I was in operations, we were given watches at different times of each day, but I was still able to take classes due to a variety of class times," said Operations Specialist 2nd Class (SW/AW) Amanda Taunton, who will be taking college algebra and English composition two during term one.
Epstein expects these high numbers should stay the same or increase through the next two terms this deployment.
JCSU offers Sailors an opportunity to pursue an education within the Navy and helps them to achieve their educational goals while completing Stennis' mission of projecting power and presence around the world.
For more news from USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74), visit www.navy.mil/local/cvn74/.