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A member of the air department training team, center, instructs Sailors as they check the condition of a simulated casualty during a general quarters drill.

Training Centers Around the Nation

Navy Know-How Begins With Advanced Training

The secret to Navy expertise is simple: train, train and train some more. America's Navy teaches all over the country with mission-specific schools that combine classroom with hands-on training. Whether you’re joining right out of high school or after earning a college degree, the Navy provides plenty of opportunity to advance yourself at all stages of your career – through a variety of Naval training centers and training programs, depending on your position in America’s Navy.

Navy training centers are cultures of experts and innovation – from the instructors to the administration. It's some of the best military education in the world, recognized as one of the world’s top training organizations by Training magazine. Sailors learn with cutting-edge technology and techniques. Classes and skills are taught by people who have been there and done that and work hard to pass on their vital experience to each Sailor in every program.

“The mission of our organization is to maintain, train and equip mission-ready Naval forces capable of winning wars, deterring aggression, and maintaining the freedom of the seas. Training is an asymmetric advantage that enables us to maintain a strong and capable maritime force to ensure security, stability and trust around the world.”

– Rear Adm. Joseph Kilkenny, Commander, Naval Education and Training Command (NETC)


Training Centers That Reflect the Mission

When you enlist, Boot Camp takes place at the Recruit Training Command (RTC) in Great Lakes, Ill. While it’s called Boot Camp, it’s more like huge college campus that includes both classroom and lots of hands-on training. Training innovations here include Fundamental Applied Skills Training (FAST) and Virtual Environments for Ship and Shore Experiential Learning (VESSEL).

FAST helps recruits become better readers. VESSEL is a favorite of most recruits. It's a video-game-based casualty response training system that combines role-playing, educational and real-time strategy games.

For those on the Officer track, you’ll begin at either Officer Candidate School (OCS) or Officer Development School (ODS). OCS is a 12-week course in Newport, R.I., tailored to train and prepare college graduates to become commissioned as Navy line Officers. ODS is a five-week course, also in Newport, tailored to train already-commissioned Officers to become Staff Corps Officers.

Specialized training and classes are available throughout your career, especially in highly technical fields. There's always room to get better, and it's always good to stay on top of the latest technical, tactical and strategic innovations. 

 Navy Search and Rescue swimmers train in a pool at Naval Base San Diego.

For Enlisted careers that require advanced skill training, training begins at “A” School. Through extensive classes and on-the-job training, you will learn the fundamentals of your chosen technical field. You could even earn an associate’s or bachelor’s degree. For a list of all training available, you can consult the Catalog of Navy Training Courses (CANTRAC).

But it is not all studies and drills at “A” School. America's Navy "A" Schools are located in some of the most scenic, historic and fun places in the United States. You'll want to use your free time to soak up the local culture and sights. You may get the chance to check out where the first English settlers landed in Dahlgren, Va. Or chow down on some fresh seafood in Bethesda, Md. Or you could swim with the dolphins in Panama City, Fla., play golf in Pensacola, Fla., or explore the world-famous San Diego Zoo.

Here’s a sampling of the “A” Schools in the U.S.

Submarine Learning Center
Groton, Conn.

Center for Surface Combat Systems
Dahlgren, Va.

Center for Security Forces
Virginia Beach, Va.

Center for Service Support
Newport, R.I.

Center for Explosive Ordinance Disposal (EOD)/Diving
Panama City, Fla.

Center for Naval Aviation Technical Training
Pensacola, Fla.

Center for Information Dominance
Pensacola, Fla.

Naval Education and Training Command
Pensacola, Fla.

Center for Seabees and Facilities Engineering
Port Hueneme, Calif.

Naval Chaplaincy School and Center
Ft. Jackson, S.C.

Training Support Center
Great Lakes, Ill.

Training Support Center
Hampton Roads, Va.

Training Support Center
San Diego, Calif.