Training program sees stokers thrive

HMCS Calgary’s Directed On-the-job Training Program team. Photo by Kathryn Mussallem

HMCS Calgary’s Directed On-the-job Training Program team. Photo by Kathryn Mussallem

Lt(N) J. Ryan Edgar, HMCS Calgary ~

With the busy operational schedule of Royal Canadian Navy (RCN) warships, obtaining new sailor-specific qualifications can be a challenge. The RCN put the Directed On-The-Job Training Program (DOJT) in place a few years ago in order to allow sailors, who otherwise would not have the opportunity, to go to sea and progress their training. Participants are able to focus all their efforts on learning and completing their training packages, resulting in impressive progress towards new qualifications. During HMCS Calgary’s transit from Esquimalt, B.C., to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, in support of Exercise Rim of the Pacific 2016, six marine engineers working towards their 2E Certification and six working towards their 3E Certification were able to participate in the program.

During their time aboard, the trainees had the opportunity to participate in engineering drills and practice emergency responses in the event of equipment failures. Additionally, they were able to conduct system walkthroughs and take advantage of the ship’s on-board training system. Evenings were spent creating technical reports, drafting system drawings and presenting technical information.

“It’s been a great experience,” said LS Tyler Jennings, a Cert 2E trainee. “I’ve been exposed to many different scenarios and have been able to participate in different evolutions that I wouldn’t have been exposed to back at my home unit. DOJT has allowed me to complete my training package, now I just need to challenge my qualification board.”

At the end of the serial, trainees completed an average of 33 per cent of their packages, with some members completing as much as 57 per cent.

“We’ve seen phenomenal progress over the past two weeks.” said Lt(N) Rowan Wilson, the Engineering Officer running the program. “The trainees have seamlessly integrated with the ship’s company, and have been able to make the most of their time on board. The command team of HMCS Calgary has been very supportive, and allowed us to really get involved in the ship’s busy program.”

This serial of the DOJT program concluded when  Calgary arrived in Pearl Harbour. Despite the participant’s hard work over the preceding two weeks, there would be no relaxing on the beach. All personnel involved in the program were immediately flown back to Esquimalt to begin putting their new skills to work at their home units.

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