SEOUL, Korea (NNS) -- Sailors in Korea were able to ask the chief of naval personnel questions during all hands calls in Chinhae and Seoul during his visit Dec. 9-11.
Vice Adm. Mark Ferguson accompanied by Fleet Master Chief, Manpower, Personnel, Training and Education (AW/SW/SCW) Scott Benning, spoke about Navy policies and their impact on Sailors and their families.
"It made me understand the PCS (permanent change of station) freeze and the major budget issues," said Yeoman 2nd Class (SW/AW) Bernadette Marasigan, from Lucena City, Philippines.
Ferguson explained how manning numbers, record recruiting, low attrition, high retention, selective reenlistment bonuses, and funding changes all relate to each other and the "check book" that he has to balance.
"He solved my issue," said Michelle Bradley, a Navy spouse and civilian employee. "They might even do a policy change because it does not involve money or accounting data."
Bradley asked about giving spouses a letter of intent so they can take advantage of the DoD Priority Placement Program for Military Spouses when job hunting even if the military sponsor does not have permanent change of station orders due to budget limitations.
CNP also spoke about Navy's role in the announced surge of 30,000 service members to Afghanistan in response to a question posed by Lt. Scott Huttleston of Trumansburg, N.Y.
Navy will continue to provide support in Operation Enduring Freedom. It is anticipated the number of Individual Assignment/Global Support Assignments billets will increase, peaking sometime in 2011, said Ferguson.
In addition, to further arm Sailors with the skills and knowledge necessary to accomplish missions worldwide, Ferguson discussed online training courses available to Sailors overseas, and an ongoing review of computer-based training (CBT) courses in "A" and "C" schools.
"Vice Adm. Ferguson said that they are changing some "A" school classes from CBT back to class room training," said Information Systems Technician Seaman Gabrielle Dixon from Virginia Beach, Va. "I think that is a good idea because I set up a network really fast during a CBT, but in the real world it would take me a lot longer."
Ferguson also highlighted the education benefits of the military.
"All of you have received a tremendous benefit in the last year, and that benefit is the Post-9/11 GI Bill," said Ferguson. "It is the most incredible benefit I think I've ever seen."
Approximately 400 Sailors and their families live in the Republic of Korea and are assigned to a wide variety of Navy and joint commands.
For more news from Chief of Naval Personnel, visit www.navy.mil/local/cnp/.