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Old 08-27-2014, 12:13 PM   #1
MickeyMcD
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Default Qualifications

Does anyone know what the different qualifications a nuke sailor should be working towards before the end of their first sea duty? And roughly how long do these/should these quals take to complete and earn?
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Old 08-27-2014, 02:05 PM   #2
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Just about everything in the navy has a qualification. You will be doing quals pretty much your entire career.
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Old 06-13-2017, 09:33 PM   #3
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Speaking from a submarine perspective, there are two parallel paths for quals. There are ship's quals (aka getting your Dolphins) and there are your Nuke quals. Time frame varies for the different watch stations and also is adjusted based on the amount of projected "at sea" time the ship will have. Typical time frame for getting your dolphins is 8-10 months but it can be done in as little as 6. I've actually seen it done faster than that but, if I remember right, there's an instruction that says you need to have 6 months on board before you can get them. For Nuke quals, you MUST be qualified your senior in-rate watch by the time you reach 18 months on board (Engine Room Supervisor for MM's. Shutdown Reactor Operator for EM's/ET's). That is a hard requirement and you risk losing your NEC if you're not.

For surface sailors, it's pretty similar. You will have your ESWS qual to do, but I don't think they push that too hard until you're done with Nuke quals. There's still the 18 month requirement for the senior in-rate watch.

Once you have finished your senior in-rate qualification, you should immediately start pursuing qualification as Engineering Watch Supervisor (subs) or Propulsion Plant Watch Supervisor (surface). This qual is a requirement to make Chief as a nuke and it also opens up the door to shore duty at Power School. If at all possible, finish this qual before your first sea tour is finished. It is 100 percent worth extending your sea tour if you have to.
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