Transition Benefits: Navy COOL Offers Opportunities for Sailors

Story Number: NNS111223-03Release Date: 12/23/2011 1:16:00 PM
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By Naval Education and Training Command Public Affairs

PENSACOLA, Fla. (NNS) -- Naval administration message (NAVADMIN) 396/11 released Dec. 22 provides important information on credentialing opportunities available through Navy Credentialing Opportunities Online (COOL) for those selected for separation under FY-12 quota-based Enlisted Retention Board (ERB).

Navy COOL is a centralized, Web-based hub that consolidates information from numerous sources at the federal, state and local levels on certifications, licenses, apprenticeships and growth opportunities that correspond with each Navy rating, job and occupation. Navy COOL also provides funding for Navy enlisted personnel to obtain these civilian licenses and certifications.

The message describes how Sailors identified for separation may apply for a waiver from the Navy COOL requirement to have a minimum one year remaining on their enlistment to apply for funding toward commercial certification and/or licensure exams found on the Navy COOL website.

"Though it isn't the purpose of the Navy's credentialing program to be used solely as a component of transition, earning an industry-recognized certification or license may provide a key factor toward a successful transition from Sailor to civilian employee," said Keith Boring, program manager, U.S. Navy Credentials Program Office.

To be eligible for credentialing, enlisted Sailors must meet one of the following eligibility requirements: they must be in the appropriate rating or occupation to which the credential is mapped; be currently working in, or have been assigned to a position to which the credential is mapped; or have prior documented experience in a position to which the credential is mapped for credentials outside of their specific rating, and the credential has relevance or applicability to the current or future needs of the command or the Navy Reserve.

Eligibility for Sailor credentials must be validated and approved by their commanding officer or command-designated approving official. Additionally, before authorizing the request commands must also certify that Sailors have passed their most recent advancement exam, and passed or been medically waived from their most recent physical fitness assessment. The Sailor must not have received any non-judicial or courts-martial punishment within the past six months, and they must be selected for separation under FY-12 quota-based ERB.

Sailors must be able to complete all certification requirements no less than 60 calendar days prior to separation from the Navy. Personnel must also satisfy credentialing agency eligibility requirements for the certification/licensure being sought prior to requesting exam funding.

If a service member decides to withdraw the request for exam funding or is unable to complete the Navy-funded credentialing exam prior to 60 calendar days from separating from the Navy, they are required to return any voucher not used and provide correspondence from their commanding officer confirming withdrawal for military or emergency reasons.

Sailors must also provide pass and fail results to Navy's credential program office within 30 calendar days of notification of exam results from the credentialing agency.

Service members affiliating with the Navy Reserve will remain eligible for continued Navy-funded credentialing exams.

"Navy COOL operates one of the most valuable ancillary programs for Sailors. It is the most organized and painless program I've used in my 23 years of naval service. Once approved, I wasn't sent a generic list of instructions; rather it was specifically tailored to the program I was applying for. It's obvious that Navy COOL maintains contact with the programs they support," said Senior Chief Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technician Brett Wallace who recently became certified in Anti-Terrorism and Homeland Security. "Getting my certificate in the mail was better than getting a $500 bonus for the month, the cost of the certificate program, because I'm more competitive for advancement within the Navy and better poised for civilian employment when I retire."

The certification and licensure exam voucher request form may be downloaded from Navy COOL website, and submitted electronically through e-mail to, or faxed (850) 452-6897.

For more information about Navy credentialing opportunities visit

For more details on the ERB exemption, review NAVADMIN 396/11.

For more information about the ERB transition support, check out the NPC ERB transition support page at, contact the NPC customer service center at 1-866-U-ASK-NPC (1-866-827-5672), or email

For more news from Naval Education and Training Command, visit

Sailors and Marines man-the-rails aboard the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76) while entering Pearl Harbor for a port visit.
Official U.S. Navy file photo.
August 31, 2011
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