SAN DIEGO – The inaugural class for the Basic Division Officer’s Course (BDOC) was formally dedicated at a ceremony on Naval Base San Diego Oct. 1.
Administered by the Surface Warfare Officers School (SWOS) Command, BDOC is an intensive, eight-week course of instruction designed to provide foundational classroom training to prospective surface warfare officers. The course will be taught in Norfolk, Va., and San Diego.
“This course will give the new division officers the foundational knowledge and skills needed to make them more effective in running their divisions and leading their personnel,” said Capt. Richard A. Brown, commanding officer, SWOS.
The emphasis on BDOC will be on in-class instruction and the use of technology such as the Conning Officer Virtual Environment (COVE) simulators which can emulate every class of ship in the U.S. Navy and all their homeports, in addition to many routine ports of call around the world. COVE allows for the reinforcement of concepts in navigation, seamanship, and shiphandling.
The new course will also provide instruction on administration, engineering, leadership, and damage control.
Vice Adm. Tom Copeman, Commander, Naval Surface Forces (SURFOR), spoke at the event, and thanked the guests and students of BDOC class 13001 for attending this major achievement for the Surface Warfare community.
“The surface warfare business we are in is very challenging. Our ships are complicated. They are the most technologically complex machines that this country has built and it takes a lot of hard work to learn how to fight them, learn how to maintain them, and learn how to train Sailors to maintain them,” said Copeman. “The Sailors that are under your charge are going to count on you and they are going to look up to you for leadership. In order for you to be a good leader, you have to know what you are doing. This course is the first step.”
BDOC training sites in Norfolk and San Diego will have eight instructors, a staff headed by a lieutenant commander, of six lieutenants, and one Quartermaster. BDOC training facilities have been equipped with state-of-the-art electronic classrooms and shiphandling simulators that meet Naval Education and Training Command (NETC) standards. Ensigns will also continue to use computer based training (CBT) for advanced qualifications.
“I’m very excited to try something new and I’m grateful I’m one of the few junior officers that get to experience this,” said Ensign Jordan Klein, one of the students in the inaugural class. “This course will give me the basic information on what will be expected of me on the ship and once I get there, I can hit the ground running.”
SWOS is headquartered in Newport, R.I., and oversees nine learning sites, providing more than 1,000 courses a year to more than 60,000 Sailors. SWOS uses a mix of instructor-led classes, hands-on labs, simulation and computer-based training. Courses include specialized training supporting all enlisted engineering ratings, and surface warfare officers at every level. Building maritime partnerships, the command also provides training to many international students.