The Center for Surface Combat Systems (CSCS) updated the surface warfare community on how they train Sailors and support the fleet at the Surface Navy Association’s (SNA) 1st Virtual Waterfront Symposium, Aug. 25 - 27.
Capt. Dave Stoner, CSCS commanding officer, oversees a global organization that consists of 14 learning sites / detachments located throughout the continental United States, Hawaii, Japan, and Spain.
CSCS trains more than 36,000 Sailors a year. The student body includes the full spectrum of a surface navy career timeline, ranging from newly graduated boot camp Sailors to commanding officers / major commanders in route to their prospective ships.
“Bottom line - CSCS’ mission is to train the fleet,” Stoner said. “Therefore, at SNA’s Virtual Waterfront Symposium, it was important we highlight our Ready, Relevant Learning (RRL) and Surface Training Advanced Virtual Environment (STAVE) initiatives. This includes our Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) Training Facilities (LTF) in San Diego and Mayport, Fla. and our Combined Integrated Air and Missile Defense (IAMD) / Anti-Submarine Warfare (ASW) Trainer (CIAT) in San Diego and Norfolk, Va. These trainers provide an environment where we can realistically recreate the high-end tactical training needed to build lethality, warfighting, and tactical proficiency. It allows Sailors to master the weapons systems with which they will fight the ship.”
Stoner also participated in the Advanced Warfighting Training panel with Rear Adm. David Welch, commander, Carrier Strike Group 15; Rear Adm. Scott Robertson, commander, Naval Surface and Mine Warfighting Development Center; and Brig. Gen. Tom Savage, deputy commanding general, 1 Marine Expeditionary Task Force.
He focused on the importance of systems specific training based on platform and billet.
“Training is the foundation of everything a Sailor does at sea – how they train, lead, and execute the mission,” Stoner said. “CSCS not only provides a solid foundation, but also ensures a Sailor will be successful throughout their naval career. The role of individual training in the training continuum is crucial. In this era of great power competition, Sailors need to be confident and competent to fight and win against any adversary.”
This was CSCS’ sixth SNA affair they have participated in and it was a new learning experience for all. Due to COVID-19, the SNA’s West Coast Symposium was refocused to a virtual waterfront event. Instead of developing a display where attendees could experience their various training demonstrations in person, they had to bring it directly to them, creating a simulated platform that people could interact with at home.
Stoner says that CSCS did miss the in-person interaction with attendees but they were able to communicate their essential role in the surface warfare community and honored to be part of SNA’s inaugural Virtual Waterfront Symposium.
“Through our ability to be agile, adaptive, and innovative, we successfully demonstrated how CSCS trains surface warriors to fight and win so that our Navy has battle-ready ships for today’s fight,” he said.
Surface Navy Association (SNA) was incorporated in 1985 to promote greater coordination and communication among those in the military, business, and academic communities who share a common interest in surface warfare while supporting the activities of surface forces.
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Carla McCarthy, firstname.lastname@example.org