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Forward Deployed Sailors Focus on Advancement, Mission

16 February 2023

From Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Maria A. Olvera Tristán

CAMP LEMONNIER, Djibouti - Forward-deployed enlisted Sailors from the ranks of E-4 to E-5 took the Navy-wide advancement exam for cycle 112 at Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti, Feb. 16.

The advancement exam is a test that allows Sailors to demonstrate their rate-specific knowledge and qualify them for promotion.

“This is important for a Sailor’s career progression,” said Chief Damir Cerkez, CLDJ Educational Services Officer and Career Counselor. “(Sailors) will be able to take the advancement test, show their knowledge on their specific rate, (and) for that pay grade.”

The exam provides an unbiased factor for the final multiple score or FMS algorithm that helps rank order qualified candidates for advancement consideration. All Sailors who take the exam have met necessary eligibility requirements, like knowledge and time in rate, for advancement and have been recommended by their Commanding Officer/Officer in Charge.

While, CLDJ is an operational installation that enables security operations in Europe, Africa, and Southwest Asia, these advancement exams and professional opportunities ensure Sailors are best prepared to successfully complete their mission.

“We administer exams each Navy advancement cycle, spring or fall,” said Cerkez. “SELRES is administered in February and August, active duty in March and September.”

Active duty, full-time support, and recruiters take the active duty enlisted Navy-wide advancement examination. Navy Reserve personnel, including all candidates serving on voluntary recall or mobilization, take the SELRES enlisted Navy-wide advancement examination.

The biggest change in 2023, according to NAVADMIN 274/22, is that the Navy has officially cancelled E-4 advancement exams for active component and TAR Sailors. Instead, all qualified E-3s will be selected for advancement using the alternate rank order to determine who advances without the exam score.

“The difference between exams is that we do not administer E-4 exams anymore, this is Navy-wide,” said Cerkez, “Sailors are still required to complete the enlisted advancement worksheet in NSIPS.”

Exams for E-7 and LDO purposes are not administrated in combat designated zones, such as Camp Lemonnier. The Education Service Officer provides a transmittal letter to Naval Education and Training Professional Development Center to make those Sailors’ selection board eligible.

The opportunity to take an advancement exam or have dedicated Navy career counselor in a combat zone, like at CLDJ, is unique and often isn’t the case in other forward deployed assignments or billets. Further, the ability to take advancement exams doesn’t detract from mission, but it enhances a Sailors abilities and knowledge.

“Bottom line is that ensuring our Sailors who are qualified, ready, and already working at the next level are recognized and promoted - even in a combat zone,” said Cerkez. “At CLDJ, we care about giving our Sailors the opportunity to advance.”


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