First-Term Sailors: Take Note of New PTS Program

Story Number: NNS030321-19Release Date: 3/17/2003 1:00:00 PM
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By Airman Apu Naik, USS Kitty Hawk

ABOARD USS KITTY HAWK, At Sea (NNS) -- First-term Sailors planning to reenlist in overmanned ratings will be immediately affected by the "Perform to Serve" (PTS) program, which provides the Navy with the opportunity to increase the number of Sailors in undermanned ratings and open advancement opportunity in crowded skills.

Depending on a number of different factors, including current pay grade and previous advancement recommendations, first-term Sailors in career reenlistment objective (CREO) group 3 could be asked to cross-rate, remain in their current rating, or Sailors may have their requests to reenlist denied.

According to guidance provided from USS Kitty Hawk's (CV 63) command career counselor's (CCC) office, the PTS program comes as the result of improved retention and reduced attrition seen within the Navy. In addition, CCC says the Navy is now in the position to align the force to achieve the right skills mix of Sailors in the fleet.

First-term Sailors will now submit PTS applications 12 months prior to reenlistment for the Navy Personnel Command (NPC) to determine where they are needed most. The applications will be processed internally by each Sailor's command and then will be sent to NPC for a final decision.

Air Traffic Controller 1st Class (AW/SW) Karen Slowe, of CCC, said Kitty Hawk's team of career counselors is developing an internal process for Sailor's to route their requests.

According to Slowe, a number of factors are to be taken into consideration by NPC when processing a Sailor's PTS request. These factors include a Sailor's commanding officer recommendation for retention and advancement, with priority given to Sailors in the highest pay grade, and Sailors who have been selected for advancement but are not yet advanced.

Other factors NPC will review include: pass, not advanced-status for Sailors who took the most recent advancement exam, critical NECs (Navy enlisted classification) held and the average of the last two regular promotion recommendations (early promote, must promote, etc.) of a candidate.

"I would be open to cross-rate if the Navy said that I had to after my first enlistment," said Aviation Boatswain's Mate Airman Ramon Limon of Los Angeles. Limon added that he would have to weigh his decision on a number of factors. "Personally, I would want the option of a number of different rates that were undermanned, to give me an option of cross-rating. But if I qualified, sure I would be open to long as it affects me in a positive way. And I would have to discuss it with my family and decide the benefits of the cross-rate, like if it would help me in the civilian world."

After the review process is complete, Sailors will receive one of the following three notifications from NPC regarding their reenlistment status: approval for reenlistment in current rate, approval to reenlist in different rate, or request denied due to lack of availability in desired rate.

If not accepted, a Sailor's requests will be re-reviewed up to six times. NPC will re-review each of these requests once per month for the first six months beginning one year before the Sailor's end of active obligated service (EAOS) date. According to Slowe, a Sailor who submits a request within six months of his EAOS will only receive one last review before the separation processes commence.

Air Department Leading Chief Petty Officer Aviation Boatswain's Mate Master Chief Tony L. Stoecker thinks the PTS program can be beneficial to both the Navy and the service member planning to reenlist.

"It evens out manning requirements, because some rates are overmanned while others are undermanned, so this program can really help out in terms of filling some billets where the Navy needs it," said Stoecker.

America's oldest active warship, Kitty Hawk remains mission-ready to respond to emergent national tasking where needed, and currently operates in the Central Command area of responsibility with coalition forces preparing for possible operations in the area. Kitty Hawk, with embarked Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 5, is the world's only permanently forward-deployed aircraft carrier and operates out of Yokosuka, Japan.

For related news, visit the USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) Navy NewsStand page at

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