BY CMDR. VICTOR CINTRON-NATAL, SC, USN
CSS is located in Fitzgerald Hall, Naval Station Newport, Rhode Island and is responsible for training in the logistics, administrative, media and maintenance functional areas with oversight of seven CSS Learning Sites, including Navy Supply Corps School (NSCS), Naval Technical Training Center Meridian, Naval School of Music (NAVSOM), the stand alone Culinary Specialist, Mass Communication Specialist “A” Schools, and the Surface/Subsurface 3M Supervisor course.
The CSS domain spans a diverse geographical area from Newport, Rhode Island, to San Diego, California, to match its functional diversity of training for seven enlisted ratings and four officer designators.
What we do? There are several triggers that cue CSS to update training material for the Fleet:
*Operational Risk Management
*Direct Force Input
*Navy Enlisted Classification Change
*Human Performance Requirements Review
[caption id="attachment_5381" align="alignright" width="300"]
Click image to view full size.
Once these cues are identified, CSS begins the updating process using the Naval Education and Training Command’s (NETC) end–to–end process. All training requirements are completed per NETC policies and instructions.
In recent years, CSS has led the way in training innovation with development of real–time group–paced and innovative multimedia training for CSS Learning Sites, introduction of an enhanced customer service training system in the Personnel Specialist (PS) Initial Skills Training School, and implementation of the SAKAI Collaborative Learning Environment in the Supply Corps Officer Basic Qualification Navy Reserve course. As a result the CSS team has accumulated numerous awards for training excellence and continues to set the standard for Navy training and education efforts.
As part of the Navy Total Force Enterprise CSS reports directly to NETC, but maintains stakeholder relationships across all Navy warfighting organizations. Maintaining continuous connections and robust feedback mechanisms across many stakeholder paths is a challenging but critical piece of the CSS’s mission. As changes in organization, policy, or system implementations occur that affect Fleet operations, those changes must be clearly understood across all perspectives, from the change originator through the training instructor. This constant communication ensures CSS can properly define and articulate resources necessary for any required or desired changes to training.
More than 250 CSS staff and faculty are dedicated to ensuring training is current, relevant, and well-delivered for the nearly 8,000 officers and enlisted Sailors who graduate from CSS courses each year. CSS’s main focus and highest priority is getting back to basic training development, being more open and inclusive on business processes, and concentrating on the well-being and security of our students, staff, and families. Our staff pays special attention to our customers “the Fleet,” and we are taking on new initiatives such as the Sailor 2025/Ready Relevant Learning (RRL) development, Personnel/Pay Administrative Support System initiative, staff development, facility upgrades, Personnel Qualification System and rate training manuals enhancements and various "A" School course revisions.
While working with the Fleet during fiscal year (FY) 2016, CSS developed training that reflects their operational requirements. CSS completed curricula rebuilds for PS and yeoman "A" Schools with stellar results. Sailor feedback and results from advancement exams for Sailors who were enrolled in the rebuilt courses have been impressive. We are still working on rebuilds for ship’s serviceman, logistics specialist, and musician "A" Schools, which will be completed spring/summer of FY17. This has been a large project, one that has been a joint effort between CSS and CSS Learning Site staffs.
CSS does not just manage curriculum for our school houses and training centers, but it fulfills the training and advancement needs of our Sailors by building an atmosphere focused on taking care of staff and making Sailors an integral part of our training business process. Our staff and instructors work hard to link organizational and personal employee goals to hard investments in support of training, communication and human capital development, all of which drive our organization. Additionally, we worked towards improvement of our workplaces, training products, facility upgrades, and enhanced services, feedback and interaction with the Fleet.
Last year, CSS improved facilities and employee work environments (e.g., ergonomic furniture, interior painting, training equipment replacement), and will continue this effort in FY17. Information technology equipment, system and server upgrades took place across much of the domain this year. CSS also made improvements to electronic classrooms (ECRs) by completing a desktop refresh for CSS Learning Site Fort Lee, Virginia, and completing Naval Tactical Command Support System’s PATRIOT system upgrades and installs for multiple CSS Learning Sites, fixing 3M system issues that CSS Learning Site Norfolk, Virginia, had been dealing with for years, and established and funded a service contract to better enable management and remote system upgrades for Navy Cash® systems.
The transition to a virtual desktop infrastructure for ECRs is still underway with NAVSOM and CSS Learning Site Norfolk being completed this year. We look forward to CSS Learning Site San Diego, California, and NSCS being completed in current year 2017. The CSS Domain workforce faced rapid change with the evolution of 2025/RRL initiative, aggressive "A" School rebuilds, and major facility upgrades. Admirably, we overcame an environment of constant change. Our mission of training the Fleet is accomplished by ensuring employees are our most important resource, always striving to improve productivity in the workplace by promoting a robust telework program, the use of flexible work schedules, providing and encouraging civilian workforce participation in fitness programs, and accommodating ergonomic needs. Continued success of the organization in supporting the Fleet is driven by efforts of each and every individual within the CSS Domain.