Defense Department News
This information is provided for historical purposes only. It may contain outdated information and links may no longer function.
Please contact the DOD Webmaster if you have any questions about this archive.

Apprenticeship Program Benefits Aircraft Carrier's Sailors


For many sailors, the military is great for on-the-job training. They work around the clock throughout the ship in different technical fields ranging from welding to photography.

With the United Service Military Apprenticeship Program, service members can attain tangible proof to show their next employer how much experience they gained working in their various fields aboard a ship.

Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Kody Kratz uses a lathe to turn down an aluminum carbide turning tube aboard the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush
Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Kody Kratz uses a lathe to turn down an aluminum carbide turning tube aboard the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush while underway in the Persian Gulf, March 29, 2017. Navy photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Brianna Bowens
Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Kody Kratz uses a lathe to turn down an aluminum carbide turning tube aboard the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush
Uses Lathe
Navy Petty Officer 3rd Class Kody Kratz uses a lathe to turn down an aluminum carbide turning tube aboard the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush while underway in the Persian Gulf, March 29, 2017. Navy photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Brianna Bowens
Photo By: Petty Officer 3rd Class Brianna Bowens
VIRIN: 170329-N-GI441-040

Most rated sailors aboard the aircraft carrier USS George H.W. Bush are eligible to enroll in USMAP. The program works with the Labor Department to provide nationally recognized apprenticeship programs that result in journeyman-level certificates of completion.

During their apprenticeship, service members document hours performing the duties associated with their military jobs.

"Having an apprenticeship out in the real world is a big deal," Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class Charles Tanner said. "This program, outside of the Navy, is very expensive and requires more hours to complete. However, through the USMAP program, it is completely free for eligible sailors."

Getting a Leg Up

The apprenticeships available coincide with the work service members are already doing on a day-to-day basis. Each certificate has a requisite amount of hours for completion. Once the hours required are completed and the certificate is received, it gives sailors a leg up in the Navy and the civilian world.

"It shows your chain of command that you can start something and finish it," Tanner said. "When you get out of the Navy and get a job, you'll often get paid more than someone who doesn't have it, or you'll be able to start out in a management position. It shows that you can get the work done, you have skills to do the job, you have been doing the job for a while already, and you have more experience than someone without an apprenticeship."

Working 40 hours a week allows someone to complete about 2,000 hours in one year. Service members underway or on deployment and working longer hours are able to log even more than that, meaning an apprenticeship is attainable in a shorter span of time.

"While doing this program, you get 12 hours while we are underway and eight when we are in port," Tanner said. "They even let you backlog hours to a certain extent."

Sailors can enroll in an apprenticeship by filling out and submitting a form or by talking to a Navy career counselor or department head.