By Rosalie Bolender, U.S. Naval War College Public Affairs
July 7, 2014

NEWPORT, R.I. – Twenty-one sailors assigned to U.S. Naval War College (NWC) in Newport, Rhode Island completed command sponsor training, July 3.

As part of the Navy’s "21st Century Sailor" initiative, the training served as an opportunity to qualify NWC sailors to perform duties as command sponsors in order to provide incoming personnel with meaningful pre-arrival communication, adequate support upon arrival and relocation assistance to meet individual sailor's needs.

“The sponsor program is key to the NWC, it ensures our newly reporting sailor's and their families have a smooth transition and can quickly assimilate to our new environment here in Rhode Island,” said Chief Navy Counselor Ann Ferguson, NWC command sponsor coordinator.

Most recently reporting to the NWC, Chief Yeoman Craig Flowers transferred from the Arleigh Burke-class destroyer, USS Laboon (DDG-58) in Norfolk, Va.

“I didn’t know much about the base, its history or the command, but from the second I received my orders, my sponsor has been sending all the information to me. Even though I’ve been here for almost a month, my sponsor has continued to make sure I’m taken care of,” said Flowers.

At the NWC, a sponsor’s duty is to help new sailors and their families adapt to their working and living environments. Sponsors provide information on the command policies and responsibilities, as well as information on housing, transportation, tours, and details of the Newport area, which includes information on schools, medical care, child care, and other resources.

Through the sponsorship training a sponsor learns how to assess the unique needs of an individual sailor both pre-and post-arrival, which allows for a more personalized and supportive experience.

“My experience has been great. It hasn’t always been that way in other commands but if the way my sponsor handled me was the model across the rest of the Navy, we’d probably be in good shape,” said Flowers.

Posted by Daniel S. Marciniak
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