VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (NNS) -- The Navy's efforts to attract, recruit and retain the best and brightest men and women ranks high among its strategic initiatives, and key among those is education.
Sailors with college degrees from accredited institutions were eligible, beginning in August 2008, to submit their academic transcripts to the Navy College Office for an increase in advancement points.
"Navy leaders have long recognized that a strong educational foundation enhances a Sailor's technical skills, leadership traits, critical thinking skills, and their ability to adapt and overcome the ever-present challenges associated with working in the dynamic maritime environment. The recent changes in advancement policy sets the correct tone for Sailors to Stay Navy and continue their education," Master Chief(SW) Gretchen Boals, command master chief at the Center for Personal and Professional Development (CPPD).
In November 2007, the Chief of Naval Personnel released Naval Administration (NAVADMIN) message 301/07, which stated enlisted Sailors preparing for advancement to pay grades E-4 through E-6 will now be awarded two points for an accredited associate's degree and four points for an accredited baccalaureate degree or higher.
Sailors preparing for advancement to chief petty officer are also eligible to receive advancement points based on the same point structure as E-4-E-6 paygrades, while Sailors preparing for E-7 through E-9 selection boards will be given favorable consideration for their academic degrees based on the recent updates to selection board guidelines.
Both prior service and in-service degrees are recognized, and similar to awards, academic degrees count for multiple advancement cycles.
During the first cycle to award education points, September 2008, Navy enlisted force stabilization officials noted a slightly larger impact during the advancement cycle than they had anticipated. Of the 89,210 test takers, 2,264 reported a post-secondary degree. The tally surpassed the projected number of degrees reported for the advancement cycle by 731.
There were 21,663 Sailors advanced during the fall 2008 cycle, and from that number, 766 held a college degree. Of those with degrees, 33.8 percent advanced, 33.2 percent would have advanced regardless of education points, and 8 percent would not have advanced if it were not for education points.
"Here at CPPD, we support the learning and development needs of all Sailors, which is why we are thrilled that E3-E5 Sailors are now being recognized and promoted for both their professional and academic successes," said Boals.
"CPPD is committed to offering academic support in the format that best meets the needs of the Sailor through counseling and academic advisement, the Navy's College Program for Afloat College Education, Tuition Assistance, and the College Level Examination Program, among others. Before even considering an academic program, every Sailor's first stop must be their local Navy College office," said Boals.
CPPD and the Navy College Program are responsible for a variety of education programs, including but not limited to the administration of the 52 Navy College offices located around the world, as well as the operations of the Navy College Program for Afloat College Education, Academic Skills Testing, and United States Military Apprenticeship Program.
Sailors interested in starting on a degree or taking advantage of any of these educational opportunities can start by visiting their local Navy College Office or the Navy College Web site at https://www.navycollege.navy.mil.
For more news from Center for Personal and Professional Development, visit www.navy.mil/local/voledpao/.