PENSACOLA, Fla. (NNS) -- The Navy announced the Navy College Program for Afloat College Education (NCPACE) Instructor Led (IL) program ended Sept. 30, 2019, and the Navy College Program (NCP) will apply NCPACE IL funds to the Tuition Assistance (TA) program.
Throughout 45 years of providing support to Sailors as they pursue off-duty voluntary education, the NCP has continually evolved to meet current trends in higher education.
“We recognize that Sailors are interested in pursuing advanced degrees, and we support their ability to further their personal educational goals,” said Ernest D’Antonio, director, Navy Voluntary Education. “This change ensures funding remains available to the greatest number of Sailors.”
Most recently, eligible Sailors have been able to take advantage of the Navy’s educational financial assistance programs, such as TA funding, as well as academic skills, refresher and college-level courses through NCPACE from accredited post-secondary institutions.
NCP staff observed a steady decline in participation in the NCPACE IL program with its traditional classroom format aboard ships during sea duty. At the same time, administrative costs remained constant regardless of enrollment numbers.
“Considering the intensive administrative oversight, the program costs and a relatively small number of Sailors opting for the IL program, along with the fact that we had no interest from higher education institutions when the supporting contract came up for renewal this year, it all together made us stop to re-evaluate what is best for Sailors at this point going forward,” said D’Antonio.
Over the past year, 80% of Sailors chose online and distance learning courses over traditional classroom courses. By fully transitioning voluntary education to a virtual model, the Navy is keeping in line with the needs of the modern Sailor.
The NCPACE DL program remains vibrant with over 300 self-contained courses from 10 academic institutions with no internet requirement. Free academic skills courses are available online through DANTES (Defense Activity for Non-Traditional Education Support).
“By discontinuing the NCPACE IL program, the Navy also reduces an administrative burden on NCPACE command coordinators while continuing to provide Sailors at sea duty commands with education options, via distance learning courses,” said D’Antonio.
TA and NCPACE DL applications may be created, command approved and submitted in MyNavy Education on the NCP website as early as 120 days in advance of the school’s published term start date. All applications must be submitted and command approved no later than 14 days preceding the academic institution’s published term start date. Sailors should apply now for TA and NCPACE DL for FY2020.
Sailors with questions about the TA/NCPACE DL process or eligibility or other funding options, may visit www.navycollege.navy.mil or contact the Navy College Virtual Education Center (NCVEC) Monday through Friday 7:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. EST by calling or sending texts messages to 1-877-838-1659/DSN 492-4684. For overseas Navy College Office information, visit: https://www.navycollege.navy.mil/contact.htm.
The NCP mobile application, available through the Navy App Locker at https://www.applocker.navy.mil/, also offers access to NCP planning tools, including required training and the counseling scheduler.
For more news from Naval Education and Training Command, visit www.navy.mil/local/cnet/.