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Advanced Education for Senior Enlisted

The Naval Education and Training Command (NETC) is seeking applicants for the FY-10 Advanced Education Voucher (AEV) program, providing advanced education opportunities for top performing Chief and Senior Chief Petty Officers. 

Announced by Naval Administrative Message (NAVADMIN) 053/10 , AEV provides financial assistance to selected senior enlisted personnel (E7-E8) to complete post-secondary, Navy-relevant degrees through off-duty education.  Tom Smith, Enlisted Education coordinator at NETC, called the educational program one of the most significant in the military, as the Navy invests in the future of enlisted leadership. 

“The senior enlisted members accepted into this program will further develop and hone the knowledge and skills necessary to lead our Navy in the future,” said Smith.  “The AEV program gives them the opportunity to get a degree from a university without having to worry about finances, as it pays for 100 percent of tuition, books and fees up to a specified limit.”

DARTThe AEV program will fund bachelor’s and master’s degree completion in designated, Navy-relevant areas of study.  Examples include: strategic foreign languages, construction management, emergency and disaster management, homeland defense and security, human resources, business administration, leadership and management, engineering, information technology, nursing, business administration, education and training management, and electrical /electronic technology. All degrees, including any not listed above must be approved by the AEV program coordinator at NETC to validate Navy relevance.

One of the Sailors who recently completed the AEV program is Senior Chief Sonar Technician (Surface) (SW/FMF/IUSS) Larry Holman, Operations Department leading chief petty officer for Commander, Submarine Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet Navy Data Center in Yokosuka, Japan.

“I think AEV gives chiefs the ability to obtain a degree and use those skills where the Navy needs them the most: on the deckplates,” said Holman.  “My master’s degree is in Human Resource Management; as a chief, that is what we do everyday, on and off duty.  My degree gives me additional leadership tools to use to help mold my 21st century Sailors into what our Navy and nation needs; flexible and educated Sailors with the ability to adapt and excel in any environment.”

Eligible applicants include E7s with no more than 16 years of time in service, and E8s with no more than 18 years of time in service.  Time in service for all pay grades is computed to October 1, 2010. Proven superior performers with continued upward mobility are encouraged to apply.

AEV will support bachelor’s degree completion in approved, Navy-relevant areas of study through off-duty education, capped at $6,700 per year for a maximum of 36 months from the date of enrollment and covers 100 percent of tuition, books, and related fees.  Total program cost per student is limited to $20,000.  Qualified candidates must have an associate degree from an accredited institution or the equivalent amount of college credit applicable to the degree being sought.

The AEV master’s degree program covers 100 percent of tuition, books, and related fees up to a maximum of $20,000 per year for up to 24 months of enrollment, with the total program cost per individual capped at $40,000. Qualified candidates must hold a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution recognized by the Department of Education.  For FY-10, Navy-relevant master’s degrees are required.

Applicants should be transferring to (or currently on) shore duty with sufficient time ashore to complete their approved degree program. Applicants on sea duty may apply provided they submit an education plan, with commanding officer endorsement, which demonstrates the ability to complete the degree program.  Senior enlisted members who have already invested in their professional development by pursuing college education and those who are currently enrolled in a qualifying post-secondary degree program using tuition assistance (TA) or other financial assistance programs are eligible to apply for the AEV program. Reimbursement for any education expenses incurred prior to participation in AEV is not authorized.  AEV and TA benefits may not be combined.

Upon completion of, or withdrawal from education for which any authorized expenses were paid, participants shall agree to remain on active duty for a period equal to three times the number of months of education completed or three years, whichever is less.  This obligation is discharged concurrently with any other service obligation program participants may have already incurred. The AEV agreement does not obligate the Navy to retain the member on active duty.  If a program participant fails to complete the period of active duty specified in the agreement, the Sailor will reimburse the United States for the cost of the advanced education received, prorated for the obligated time served.

The Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy will convene the AEV Program selection board in March 2010 and program selectees will be expected to enroll in studies in the summer or fall 2010 terms.

Deadline for applying for FY10 programs is March 5, 2010.  Applications should be sent to Naval Education and Training Command (N525), 250 Dallas Street, Pensacola, FL, 32508-5220.  See NAVADMIN 053/10 for specific requirements and application guidelines.  Packages must be endorsed by the applicant’s  commanding officer and command master chief.  For more information on the program, call Tom Smith, AEV and Enlisted Learning & Development coordinator (NETC N525) at (850) 452-7271 (DSN 922) or email at thomas.a.smith4@navy.mil.

The AEV program is a supporting element of the Enlisted Learning and Development Strategy, which includes post-secondary education as an integral part of the career roadmap for each rating career track.

Additional information about the AEV program may be viewed on the Navy Knowledge Online (NKO) Web site (www.nko.navy.mil).  After logging on, click the ‘Learning’ tab, then go to the quick link for AEV located on the left hand side of the page.

For more information on the Naval Education and Training Command, visit https://www.netc.navy.mil/.

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