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PENSACOLA, Fla. (NNS) - The Naval Education and Training Command announced Dec. 29 that the Navy continues to invest in a broad range of officer advanced education opportunities to meet existing and future mission requirements as well as support the Maritime Strategy by building the future force.

Navy graduate education programs directly support validated fleet requirements through the Navy Subspecialty System (NSS). The NSS ensures that all graduate education programs are aligned to support fleet requirements. Graduates are assigned to specialization tours as soon as practical, typically within the first or second shore assignment following graduation. The Navy aims to place officers in multiple subspecialty assignments throughout their careers to maximize its return on investment.

"We have a robust advanced education program that covers from the beginning of your career to the executive level," said Lt. Cmdr. Joseph Scott, graduate education programs section head for the office of the Chief of Naval Operations (OPNAV). "The Navy funded more than 1,300 full-time master's and doctorate degrees over the past two years. In addition, there are numerous fellowships and other development paths available for qualified officers."

The Navy uses more than 70 degree programs at military and civilian institutions, with degrees ranging from electrical engineering to Department of Defense-focused financial management. The majority of the Navy's graduate degrees are obtained through the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS) in Monterey, Calif.

"One of the best possible investments we can make is education," said Vice Adm. Mark Ferguson, the chief of naval personnel. "These graduate programs provide officers the professional and technical competency needed in their current duties and enable them to anticipate future requirements and capabilities. Our success as a Navy that's forward-deployed and engaged around the world depends on the right education and training."

Officers interested in graduate education should contact their detailers to determine the best timing and paths to reach their academic goals and identify applicable subspecialties.

"The Navy selects only the highest-caliber officers for graduate education in conjunction with career timing," said Scott. "Detailers work to schedule advanced education and subsequent assignments so that graduates meet career progression milestones while encouraging professional growth."

Graduate education requires that candidates meet their particular degree program's admission requirements. For NPS, this means having a qualifying Academic Profile Code (APC). All advanced education opportunities are competitive and receive numerous applicants, so competition is keen. For a complete listing of Naval Postgraduate School opportunities and qualifying APCs, see the course catalog at .

A partial listing of graduate educational opportunities includes:

- The Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, Calif., an accredited research university that grants both master's and doctoral degrees. ( )

- The Naval War College in Newport, R.I., an education and research institution that grants master's degrees in conjunction with its Professional Military Education (PME) program of study. ( )

- The Olmsted Scholarship Program, a full-time master's degree program for selected unrestricted line (URL) and Information Warfare Officers (181X) and Intelligence Officers (183X) that provides two years of full-time graduate study using a foreign language and leads to a degree from a foreign university. (See Naval Administrative Message (NAVADMIN) 202-10.)

- The Naval Academy GET (Graduate Education + Teaching Program), which offers selected URL officers 12 months of full-time graduate education at selected civilian institutions directly followed by two-academic-year teaching assignments at the Naval Academy as officer instructors. (See NAVADMIN 260-10.)

- The Executive Master of Business Administration Distance Learning Degree Program, offered by NPS at selected locations. (See NAVADMIN 173-10.)

Naval Administrative Messages are available here:

For more information about officer graduation opportunities, visit:<BR< a>>
For more information about the Naval Education and Training Command, visit the NETC website at:

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By Ed Barker, Naval Education and Training Command Public Affairs