PENSACOLA, Fla. (NNS) -- Did you know there is a dedicated team of professionals onboard Naval Air Station Pensacola Corry Station, Pensacola, Fla., persistently working to develop, update, and provide various culture orientation and foreign language training resources, free of charge, for Department of the Navy personnel and family members?
The Navy's Center for Language, Regional Expertise, and Culture (CLREC) team delivers training on foreign cultures and languages to prepare Navy personnel for global engagements to strengthen ties with enduring allies and cultivate relationships with emerging partners.
CLREC courses, presentations, and working aids present general information about the nature of culture and specific information about particular cultures, including history, geography, ethnic groups, religious institutions, societal norms, culturally-driven individual behaviors and etiquette, and culturally-appropriate and taboo behaviors of many nations. All resources support the Ready Relevant Learning (RRL) initiative of Sailor 2025 by providing the right training, at the right time, in the most effective manner for our Sailors.
The Every Deployment - Global Engagement, better known as Navy EDGE, Cross-Cultural Competence course talks to cultural barriers and the importance of cross cultural communication. The EDGE course, Culture Shock, describes the phenomenon and its effects. It also identifies symptoms of culture shock and provides strategies to avoid and mitigate it.
Culture-specific EDGE courses exist for the overseas fleet concentration areas of Bahrain, Italy, Korea, Japan, and Spain and for China, Iran and Russia, nations of strategic interest. Cultural Orientation Training presentations, or COTs, are for the Sailor visiting a foreign country or engaging with someone from a foreign culture. Currently, COTs are available for 37 nations with more under development. EDGE courses and COT presentations are on Navy e-Learning, Navy e-Learning Afloat and the Navy Global Deployer Application for mobile devices.
The Global Deployer App works on Apple and Android devices and is tied to the Navy’s Learning Management System; Sailors completing EDGE or COT courses via the app receive credit for course completion in Navy e-Learning and their Electronic Training Jacket. To find CLREC training on Navy e-Learning, navigate to the course catalog and search for the key words, “EDGE” and “COT”. The Navy Global Deployer App is free and available for download by anyone from iTunes and Google Play.
Numbered fleet operations orders mandate commanding officers ensure their crews establish and maintain cultural awareness when visiting foreign ports and when operating in and transiting foreign operating areas.
“We have designed our cultural and language training to support Navy mission and to permit commanding officers to satisfy combatant commanders’ theater-entry training requirements,” said Christopher Wise, director of the Navy’s CLREC office. “Satisfying training mandates is…well…mandated, but our goal is to have those using our training materials and participating in our instruction acquire the knowledge and skills to feel comfortable in the foreign environment, to help them have positive experiences and interactions, and to be great ambassadors for our Navy and nation,” said Wise. “Sailors who understand others’ cultural perspectives better understand their environment and are better able to shape their own attitudes and behaviors.”
Beyond culture training, CLREC resources foreign language familiarization classes for Navy personnel stationed in Bahrain, Italy, Japan, Korea and Spain. The extent to which official duties require interaction with host-nation personnel, who may not speak English, drives eligibility to participate. Interested personnel should contact their command language program manager or training officer.
CLREC’s work directly supports and aligns with the Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Mike Gilday’s top priorities of Warfighting, Warfighter and Future Navy as outlined in his in Fragmentary Order 01/2019: A Design for Maintaining Maritime Superiority 2.0.
“Build Alliances and Partnerships…Operating and exercising together with allies and partners, our fleet commanders will focus on full interoperability at the high end of naval warfare. We will build on existing maritime intelligence and logistics partnerships with allied nations, and expand relationships with partner nations to broaden and strengthen global maritime awareness and access,” wrote Gilday.
In addition to culture and language training, CLREC manages foreign language testing administered for Navy personnel at various sites throughout the world.
"We're excited to be able to provide language testing services," said Wise. "Measuring foreign language proficiency through testing gives Navy leaders insight to the language capabilities available to them and, for a Sailor, a language proficiency score can establish eligibility for training, a new career field, or a special assignment. Demonstrated proficiency may result in award of secondary Navy Enlisted Classifications, Foreign Language Proficiency Bonus pay, and / or college credit. There are many benefits to testing."
Navy foreign language testing sites offer the Defense Language Aptitude Battery (DLAB), the Defense Language Proficiency Test (DLPT), and the Oral Proficiency Interview (OPI).
The DLAB measures the aptitude for foreign language learning by the typical native English speaker and screens personnel for:
• assignments requiring foreign language training (e.g., Personnel Exchange Program; Attaché duty; Defense Threat Reduction Agency; Olmsted Scholar Program; foreign war college)
• the cryptologic technician (interpretive), or CTI rating
• the foreign area officer, or FAO community
Don’t hesitate to explore and utilize these resources to better prepare yourself and your teams to succeed in sustained, day-to-day deck-plate diplomacy. To order culture or language training materials, schedule language training or testing, access pertinent instructions, or just ask a question, please contact the CLREC team: Commercial: 850-452-6736; DSN: 312-459-6736; firstname.lastname@example.org; email@example.com; and firstname.lastname@example.org.
To learn more about CLREC, visit: www.public.navy.mil/netc/centers/ciwt/clrec/Default.aspx
With four schoolhouse commands, two detachments, and training sites throughout the United States and Japan, CIWT is recognized as Naval Education and Training Command’s top learning center for the past three years. Training over 20,000 students every year, CIWT delivers trained information warfare professionals to the Navy and joint services. CIWT also offers more than 200 courses for cryptologic technicians, intelligence specialists, information systems technicians, electronics technicians and officers in the information warfare community.
For more news from Center for Information Warfare Training, visit www.navy.mil/local/cid/.