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New Course Prepares Command Pay and Personnel Administrators to Support the Fleet

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PENSACOLA, Fla. (NNS) -- A two-week course launching July 30 will train Command Pay and Personnel Administrators (CPPAs) as part of Sailor 2025's focus to improve the quality of pay and personnel services across the Navy.

Center for Service Support (CSS) developed the "C" School course in collaboration with Navy Personnel Command's Pay, Personnel and Benefits Branch (PERS-2) to support the Sailors and civilians at the frontline of this effort as CPPAs, who serve as a critical link between individual Sailors, their commands, and their supporting pay and personnel organization.

"They are tasked with ensuring all pay and personnel documents are initiated and transmitted from the command in accordance with current Navy pay and personnel policies and procedures, which is why this 'C' School is so important," said Dr. Tom Palmer, PERS-2 workforce development and talent management lead. "As the Navy continues on with these transformation initiatives, this course will provide CPPAs the knowledge to work in tandem with the My Navy Career Center and personnel support detachments to better support our shipmates fleetwide."

CSS's CPPA Program Lead Lori Henault led the pilot for the course in June at Training Support Center (TSC) Hampton Roads, Virginia Beach, Virginia.

"So much thanks are owed to the team of professionals whose collective effort made this possible," said Henault. "We were able to quickly prioritize and produce a course of instruction that provided the CPPA cadre with a more comprehensive training better preparing them to be an intricate part of the administrative process."

A diverse pool of students, including yeomen, personnel specialists, Sailors from non-administrative ratings, and civilians, experienced the test run of the course, to best represent the CPPA community as a whole.

"This course represents a tremendous team effort between CSS and PERS-2," said Rear Adm. Kyle Cozad, commander of Naval Education and Training Command (NETC). "I'm most pleased that we went from identifying a critical fleet shortfall earlier this spring to full course implementation in record time. This is all about making sure our CPPAs have the right tools to take care of our Sailors, and thanks to the team's hard work, we were able to significantly compress a curriculum development process that could take well over a year into 'live' course delivery later this month - less than five months from flash to bang."

The robust 80-hour curriculum provides the necessary tools to initiate Navy pay, personnel, and travel transactions at the command level both ashore and afloat. CSS teamed with NETC to use innovative processes to design, develop, pilot and field the course in only five months.

"CPPAs play a vital role in supporting our warfighters in each and every command across the fleet, and this greatly improved learning opportunity will lead to markedly better administrative and pay support for our Sailors," said Rear Adm. Jeff Hughes, commander, Navy Personnel Command. "I am confident it will both improve the quality of service for our Sailors, which in turn will provide our Sailors the ability to focus more on improving our Navy's operational effectiveness and lethality."

The pilot course resulted in concrete input on the content from both experienced and inexperienced administrators and provided instant feedback on the instructor-led training.

"Even as a veteran Sailor I learned a lot in this course," said Senior Chief Yeoman Tiwana Powell, one of the pilot course students. "I've already gone ahead and contacted everyone I know that has junior Sailors working as CPPAs and highly recommended that they enroll their Sailors in this class ASAP."

Chief Personnel Specialist JayJay Robles, CSS's personnel specialist training manager, and Chief Yeoman Jesse Berkhoudt, CSS's yeoman training manager, developed the course and served as the pilot course's instructors.

"The CPPA is evolving from a collateral duty to a primary duty," said Berkhoudt, remarking on how the CPPA's responsibilities have drastically changed over the last two years. "CPPAs will now be able to perform their duties with training, which is not only current with the already demanding responsibilities, but also standardized across the fleet."

While the CPPA will be doing many operations similar to an administration or personnel department, they do not and will not replace them. However, the CPPA role is designed to help and be a resource for Sailors.

"We want the class to be as effective and real as possible," said Robles. "We are using the same forms and situations that are exactly the kind of stuff a CPPA would deal with, like moving a Sailor with three kids or somebody with BAH issues - things like that."

Attending the classroom course gives students a cohesive learning experience, letting them ask questions and have discussions.

"We don't have to wonder if we're doing it right no matter where we are," said Construction Electrician 2nd Class Spencer Bouchard, another pilot course student. "In this class, they are standardizing our requirements, and with that we can eliminate a lot of the confusion, like having one form here and a different one somewhere else. We can point out ways we can help all the CPPAs stay on the same page and focus on helping Sailors with their issues."

Berkhoudt emphasized how the pilot course quickly showed how CPPAs can improve their knowledge. The CPPA toolbox already included an interactive CPPA web-based course, available through My Navy Portal via Navy e-Learning.

"Based off averages from the initial pre-test to the first exam after 40 hours of classroom training, pilot students who received both the online training and/or were currently filling a CPPA role improved their exam scores by 22 percent after the first week," said Berkhoudt.

Once fully implemented, CSS instructors will teach the CPPA course on each coast, at TSC Hampton Roads and at TSC San Diego.

Personnel in the yeoman (YN), yeoman (submarines) (YNS), personnel specialist (PS), navy counselor (NC) ratings; those personnel in ratings assigned to commands without a YN, YNS, PS, or NC (E-4 through E-9); and designated civilian personnel are eligible for the CPPA course (A-500-0035).

CPPAs interested in enrolling in the course should contact their training manager or coordinator to request a quota for the course.

The full schedule listing is available through FY19 via the Enterprise Naval Training Reservation System (eNTRS) or by searching CDP 19K6 (Dam Neck) and CDP 19K7 (San Diego) on the Catalog of Navy Training Courses (CANTRAC). Training officers can request quotas through eNTRS or the training support centers. Each class will hold approximately 24 seats, with 21 dedicated to active duty and 3 to civilian employees who are or will be functioning as a CPPA. The priority for quota approval will be for Sailors currently at operational commands set for deployment that are CPPAs but have not attended the course.

Once the billets are available in the Billet Based Distribution (BBD) system in the fall, detailers will be the primary mode of requesting quotas. Quotas that are not filled 30 days prior to class convening dates will be released to TSC Hampton Roads to be filled by the fleet. Contact information and directions will be in CANTRAC when this takes effect.

Sailors can obtain the A61A Command Pay and Personnel Administrator Navy Enlisted Classification (NEC) code now by either:
1. Completing the Navy e-Learning (NeL) Command Pay and Personnel Administrator (CPPA) Training Course (PERS2-PERS2-PAYPERS-CPPA-CPPATRAINING-V1.0); Department of the Navy Annual Privacy Training (DON-PRIV-1.00; and Records Management in the DON: Everyone's Responsibility (DOR-RM-010-1.2) as identified in the Navy Enlisted Classification Manual.
2. Completing A-500-0035.

Sailors who already possess the NEC through NeL will not be mandated to attend the 80-hour course, but it is highly encouraged as the level of instructional training far exceeds the current NeL option. When CPPA billets are coded in the BBD system, it will be mandatory for Sailors to hold the A16A NEC prior to checking aboard.

CPPA resources are available at http://www.public.navy.mil/bupers-npc/support/paypers/cpcresources/Pages/default2.aspx

Center of Service Support, in Newport, Rhode Island, provides Sailors in the naval administration, logistics and media communities the necessary skills, knowledge and education to enhance lifelong learning and to support the fleet's warfighting mission. 

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