CCAD Marshall Islands Seabees practice what they teach

By Builder 1st Class Garnett Whitmire, Det. Marshall Island / NMCB 11

KWAJALEIN ATOLL, Republic of the Marshall Islands – Fourteen Seabees of Naval Mobile Construction Battalion (NMCB) 11, Construction Civic Action Detail (CCAD) Marshall Islands, deployed to Marshall Islands, took the March 2015 Substitute Navy Wide Advancement Exam (NWAE), March 28, 2015.
NMCB 11 Deployment 2015
In January, CCAD Marshall Islands traveled from Gulfport, Mississippi, to the Republic of Marshall Islands (RMI) to complete humanitarian construction alongside local workers and conduct community engagement programs. The 21 Seabees assigned were hand-picked to build resilient bonds between the local populace and the U.S. military during their seven-month deployment.

In between construction project work, the Seabees have been providing Armed Services Vocational Assessment Battery (ASVAB) tutoring twice a week at Ebeye Public School on Ebeye Island, Kwjalein Atoll. For 14 of the Seabees, the advancement exam was a chance to improve their own careers using the skills they developed during weeks of tutoring.

“Teaching the ASVAB to the students on Ebeye put me in the test taking mindset early on in deployment,” said Construction Electrician Constructionman Jamette Coleman, who tutors Ebeye students in English composition.
NMCB 11 Deployment 2015
The six-month deployment to United States Army Garrison Kwajalein Atoll (USAGKA), a remote base in the Pacific, presented unusual challenges for exam preparation. Without the homeport resources available at Naval Construction Battalion Center (NCBC) Gulfport, the 14 Seabees banded together to gather rate-specific study materials. They also organized weekly on- and off-duty study groups utilizing Q&A style techniques, methods familiar from their ASVAB tutoring program.

With low advancement quotas in all Seabee rates, some sailors saw the exam as a prelude to conversion.

“Honestly, taking this exam is a stepping stone and landmark in my journey to cross-rate to Navy Legalman. I know my rate well enough that I’m confident,” said Steelworker 3rd Class Kyrah Alcorn.

Others plan for in-rate advancement. “I feel pretty good. I’ve studied a lot,” said Engineering Aide 3rd Class Deshay Baskin. CCAD Marshall Island looks forward to success this Memorial Day when the results are announced by the Navy Advancement Center.

NMCB-11 is a Naval Construction Force battalion specializing in contingency construction, disaster response, and humanitarian assistance. NMCB-11 is currently forward deployed to multiple locations in support of U.S. Africa Command, U.S. European Command, U.S. Central Command, and U.S. Pacific Command areas of responsibility. The battalion’s homeport is in Gulfport, Mississippi.

NMCB 11 Deployment 2015

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