An active duty course manager and lead instructor at the Center for Information Dominance (CID) Unit Corry Station, Fla., recently obtained two certifications through the Navy Credentialing Opportunities On-Line (COOL) program. CT1 Jessica Gaukel talks about the program and what it has offered her.
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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.
CT1 Gaukel explained that Navy COOL is, for many new Sailors, their first opportunity to take advantage of advanced training because new recruits don’t qualify for tuition assistance to attend college until they’ve completed one year of active service.
“What I try to tell all of our students, is that after they complete “A” school, they should go through Navy COOL, obtain a voucher to take these certifications,” Gaukel said. “They should take a couple of days for review, but they should be able to pass their exams, and the best thing is that Navy COOL pays for all of it.”
To date, Navy COOL has processed nearly 66,000 credentials for Sailors and received more than 118 million hits to the Navy COOL Web site at https://www.cool.navy.mil. On average, Sailors are passing at a rate of 96 to 98 percent for voluntary licenses and certifications, compared to the national average pass rate of 75 to 80 percent.
The end result of the pursuit of a civilian certification is that the Sailor’s individual professional knowledge and skill-set usually increases due to the extra preparation time required for certification examinations and ongoing maintenance of that certification. Professional credentialing is a key component of the Navy’s Enlisted Learning and Development Strategy and is integrated into every enlisted Learning and Development Roadmap (LaDR). Credentials are found on all ratings’ LaDR documents.
CID is the Navy’s Learning Center that leads, manages and delivers Navy and joint force training in information operations, information technology, cryptology and intelligence.”By using these certifications, and learning and reviewing the newest books that come out, we’re staying current,” Gaukel said. “So they’re continually feeding themselves to become a better operator, a better analyst, and a better Sailor.”
With a staff of nearly 1,300 military, civilian and contracted staff members, CID oversees the development and administration of more than 168 courses at four commands, two detachments and 14 learning sites throughout the United States and in Japan. CID provides training for approximately 24,000 members of the U.S. Armed Services and allied forces each year.
Navy COOL is one of many opportunities for personal and professional growth available to active duty and Reserve component Sailors to earn certificates, licenses and degrees making them invaluable assets to the Navy. Those programs are important parts of the 21st Century Sailor and Marine initiative which consolidates a set of objectives and policies, new and existing, to maximize Sailor and Marine personal readiness, build resiliency and hone the most combat-effective force in the history of the Department of the Navy.