Story by Glenn Sircy
JOHN C. STENNIS SPACE CENTER, Miss.- Naval Small Craft Instruction and Technical Training School (NAVSCIATTS), in coordination with the Navy International Programs Office (NIPO) PMS 325 in support of U.S. Embassy Nepal (USEMB), U.S. Pacific Command (USPACOM), Special Operations Command, Pacific (SOCPAC), and Naval Special Warfare Unit One’s (NSWU-1) Lines of Effort (LOE), recently contributed to a “Total Package Approach” for a Foreign Military Financing (FMF) case for Nepal.
NAVSCIATTS is U.S. Special Operations Command’s (USSOCOM) International Training Center specializing in applied Security Cooperation/Security Assistance (SC/SA) programs “where the classroom meets the field.” This operationalized training center directly supports theater commander’s building partner capacity (BPC) efforts and protects both the U.S. and the partner nations’ “return on investment.”
NAVSCIATTS’ Subject Matter Experts (SMEs), in support of PMS 325, were involved with the initial assessment of requirements with the PMS 325 case writers assisting with technical expertise to include training requirements in the development of the FMF case for 14 riverine small craft to the Nepalese army. These case recommendations included CONUS and OCONUS training in support of initial skills development and follow-on in-country training.
Recently, six Nepalese operators and maintainers attended five separate NAVSCIATTS’ courses of instruction with a follow-on Instructor Development Course, “train the trainers,” in support of both the tactical employment and the sustainment of this new/or increased partner nation capacity and capability. Nepal is now the 107th partner nation to participate in training offered by NAVSCIATTS.
“I am humbled to represent the first cadre of Nepalese students to attend and join the list of 106 other partner nations to graduate NAVSCIATTS’ courses,” said Capt. Sunil Kumar Thapa, a Nepalese army officer/student that participated in the Patrol Craft Officer Riverine (PCO-R) course. “The training we receive here will help our country deter, prepare for and respond to potential threats or events.”
In support of USPACOM’s and SOCPAC’s regional Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief (HA/DR) preparation efforts, NAVSCIATTS will deploy a Mobile Training Team (MTT) to Nepal to help facilitate the Nepalese “trained trainers” as lead instructors for other Nepalese small craft operators and maintainers. The upcoming two-week MTT event will focus on the operational employment and routine maintenance of twelve Zodiacs and two 31 feet Willard Marine river boats. Additionally, with USEMB and SOCPAC, NAVSCIATTS will encourage interoperability between multiple Nepalese units.
These engagements help develop vital relationships and protect the investments of both the United States and Nepal while improving partner capacity within the HA/DR domain by focusing on developing Nepal’s ability to effectively respond to a HA/DR event within their own waterways.
“This ‘Total Package Approach’ initiative is a game-changer that readily promotes interagency and partner nation collaboration through education and training opportunities with partner nations that help facilitate long-term relationships to achieve mutual security objectives,” said Cmdr. Clay Pendergrass, commanding officer of NAVSCIATTS.
Both the U.S. and Nepal have had extensive contact building key relationships over the years, and Nepalese army units and Army Air Service units have served with distinction alongside American forces in places such as Haiti, Iraq, and Somalia.
NAVSCIATTS currently offers 20 courses with an average of nearly 1,000 personnel graduating from in-resident and mobile training events annually. Since 1963, over 11,000 students from 107 partner nations have graduated from NAVSCIATTS. Courses are offered in English and Spanish or in other languages through the use of translators.
For more news from Naval Small Craft Instruction and Technical Training School, visit http://www.navy.mil/local/navsciatts/.