Course Helps Vinson Sailors Prepare to Become Petty Officers

Story Number: NNS091217-23Release Date: 12/17/2009 6:37:00 PM
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By Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Austin Rooney, USS Carl Vinson Public Affairs

USS CARL VINSON, At Sea (NNS) -- USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) requires all newly selected third class petty officers to attend Petty Officer Indoctrination Training courses.

Aviation Boatswain's Mate (Handling) 1st Class (AW) Miguel Rivera, an instructor for the course, said he thinks the mandatory training is vital to prepare new petty officers for the challenges of being a leader.

"Becoming a third class is never an easy thing," said Rivera. "As you're going up the ladder of the chain of command your role becomes more vital every day."

Most of the two-day course consists of open discussion, where the soon-to-be petty officers can ask questions and learn from the experience of the course instructors.

The rest of the class usually involves the instructors telling the selectees what will be expected of them when they officially advance to their new rank.

"When you're an E-1 or E-3 your role is not very defined in the command structure," said Rivera. "Third class petty officers' roles are very defined. The chain of command's expectations of them will be very high because they represent the future of the Navy. Some of these guys will probably be down here teaching this class when they make first [class petty officer]."

Information Systems Technician Seaman (SW) Melissa York found the course very beneficial.

"It helped define the responsibilities that we will get as third classes," said York. "It was really well done; it made me confident that I'll be an effective leader."
The petty officer indoctrination training course is organized and facilitated by Vinson's First Class Mess, and overseen by the command master chief.

"[The course] prepares these new Sailors to enter the role of leadership," said Rivera. "This is the very first step in becoming a chief petty officer. Deckplate leadership starts here - when you put on third class."

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