The Center for Surface Combat Systems (CSCS) “trains warfighters how to fight and win.”
That was the message Capt. Dave Stoner, CSCS commanding officer, delivered to active duty, government officials, industry partners, and military retirees during the week-long, virtual 33rd Surface Navy Association (SNA) National Symposium, Jan. 11 – 15.
CSCS oversees a global organization that consists of 14 learning sites / detachments located throughout the continental United States, Hawaii, Japan, and Spain. CSCS is the only training command that trains every individual surface Navy warfighters, more than 36,000 a year, in the maintenance, operations, and tactical employment of surface combat systems. The student body includes the full spectrum of a surface navy career timeline, ranging from newly graduated boot camp Sailors to commanding officers / major commanders in route to their prospective ships.
“Bottom line - CSCS’ mission is to train the fleet,” Stoner said. “At this year’s SNA National Symposium, it was important we highlight our Ready, Relevant Learning [RRL] and Surface Training Advanced Virtual Environment [STAVE] initiatives.
"This includes our Littoral Combat Ship [LCS] Training Facilities [LTF] in San Diego and Mayport, Fla.; Combined Integrated Air and Missile Defense [IAMD] / Anti-Submarine Warfare [ASW] Trainer [CIAT] in San Diego and Norfolk, Va.; and Aegis Virtual Maintenance Trainer [VMT], which will be initially located in Dahlgren, Va. but will quickly evolve to a distributed training system to support fleet concentration areas," Stoner said. "These trainers provide an environment where we can realistically recreate the high-end tactical training needed to build lethality, warfighting, and tactical proficiency. It allows Sailors to master the weapons systems with which they will fight the ship.”
This was CSCS’ seventh SNA engagement. Due to COVID-19, the National Symposium was virtual. Instead of having an exhibit where attendees could experience various training demonstrations in person, CSCS had to bring it directly to them, creating a simulated platform that people could interact with at home or in the office.
Stoner says CSCS did miss the in-person interaction with attendees but they were able to communicate their important role in training the warfighter.
“Today, we are involved in a critical power competition,” he said. “It is more important than ever that CSCS continues to provide better-trained, better-qualified Sailors to the fleet so our Navy can fight and win tonight.”
Surface Navy Association (SNA) was incorporated in 1985 to promote greater coordination and communication among those in the military, business, and academic communities who share a common interest in surface warfare while supporting the activities of surface forces.
For information on the Surface Navy Association, visit
For information on the Center for Surface Combat System, visit https://www.netc.navy.mil/CSCS/
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