According to the Navy Advancement Center data, Sailors with a college degree advance at a rate that was higher than their counterparts without a degree.
Lt. Cmdr. Jim LeViness, director of the NAC said. "The data shows the difference a degree can make, but only if it's combined with sustained, superior performance and excellent test scores. An important point is that degrees must be verified and recorded properly to earn points."
Sailors competing for advancement to paygrades E4-E6 will be awarded two points for an accredited associate degree, and four points for an accredited baccalaureate degree or above. Education points will be awarded for the highest degree held, and will increase the overall final multiple score (FMS) points with no reduction in points from other factors.
"According to our data, most of the Sailors with degrees would have advanced even without the education points," said Master Chief Electrician's Mate (SS) Jeromie Cook, NETPDTC command master chief. "Education enables and reinforces the critical thinking skills that make a better Sailor, and a more efficient, more technical future force. Education points help, but a degree alone won't get you there. Sailors need to remember that the biggest point makers will always be their evaluations and exam score."
To receive the advancement points for education, Sailors must ensure transcripts with degree information are forwarded directly from their academic institution to the Virtual Education Center (VEC).
"We've always known that education has a positive impact on performance and advancement, but this is the first time we had numbers to validate how much," said Jennie Humes, deputy director of Voluntary Education (VOLED) for the Navy. "Command leaders should guide Sailors in the attainment of their career goals by ensuring Sailors are aware of available education opportunities, including academic skills courses in addition to degree programs. Developing study habits from earning a degree can also help Sailors in their studying for exams."
Sailors are also strongly encouraged to verify degrees are documented in their Joint Service Transcript.
To allow sufficient time for the VEC to process all documents, transcripts for Sailors competing for advancement for E4-E6 must be received by no later than the first of the month in which their advancement exam occurs. For more information about the Virtual Education Center and the Navy College Program, visit https://www.navycollege.navy.mil.
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If you are ready to get started on your degree there are two things you need to do: First, contact your Navy College representative for counseling on proper use of your benefits. Second, visit the Military.com School Finder to locate an accredited college or university that offers the flexible degree program that suits your needs.
To learn more about how to get started earning your degree, visit the Military.com Education Center.