Question: What is the Career Intermission Program?
The Career Intermission Program (CIP) was established in 2009 as a means of addressing the life/work challenges Sailors might face. Each year, CIP allows active duty or Full Time Support Officers and active duty or Full Time Support enlisted Sailors to take a sabbatical from their military service, transitioning into the Individual Ready Reserve (IRR) for up to three years. Following their career intermission, Sailors return to active duty with a two-for-one service obligation for time spent in the IRR.
CIP allows Sailors to take a break from their military service, address these challenges or opportunities, and return to service as stronger Sailors. A career intermission may be used for a multitude of personal or professional reasons, from pursuing additional education to starting a family or caring for an ailing loved one. CIP is not limited to specific rates or communities, and has been used successfully by Officers and enlisted Sailors. Recent participants include a Navy SEAL who used CIP to obtain a graduate degree from Harvard and an Aviation Electronics Technician to take time off to attend to an ailing parent.
Question: Has CIP been extended?
Yes. Authorization was granted to make CIP a permanent program.
Question: Who can apply for CIP?
Sailors on active duty, as well as Full Time Support (FTS) personnel, can apply for CIP.
Not all Sailors who apply for CIP will be accepted. CIP is not a one-size-fits-all program, and not all Sailors will qualify for CIP. For those who do qualify, CIP provides options for achieving optimal life/work integration in light of situations that would otherwise be difficult or incompatible with military service. More details on specific program requirements can be found in OPNAVINST 1330.2C.
Question: What are some of the benefits of CIP?
During their intermission, Sailors retain their full medical and dental benefits for themselves and their dependents, commissary and Navy Exchange benefits, and a monthly stipend equal to 2 times 1/30 of the participant’s active duty basic pay. Sailors are also authorized a one-time CONUS PCS to the location of their choice.
Additionally, the FY13 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) revision included provisions allowing CIP participants the ability to carry forward through their intermission unused accrued leave balance, not to exceed 60 days. In addition, CIP participants have the option to use, sell back, or lose any unused accrued leave before starting CIP participation. The revision also changes authority for disability processing, allowing participants that become critically ill or injured during their program participation to be medically treated under the same provisions as a member serving on active duty.
Question: Can I use my GI Bill while participating in the Career Intermission Program?
CIP participants are authorized to use their Post-9/11 or Webb GI Bill while in the IRR, provided they meet the Post-9/11 or Webb GI Bill requirements. However, CIP participants are not authorized to use Tuition Assistance (TA) while participating in the program.
Question: How will CIP affect my promotion/advancement opportunity?
During their career intermission, CIP participants are exempt from consideration for promotion or advancement. Upon returning to active duty, the participant’s date of rank is adjusted, allowing the participant to remain competitive with those people at the same experience level. Numerous CIP participants, Officer and enlisted, have been promoted following their participation in the program.
For Officers, the date of rank is adjusted to a later date based on the length of the participant’s intermission. For enlisted Sailors, enlisted time in rate (TIR) and effective date of paygrade are adjusted to a later date based on the length of the participant’s intermission. Our Sailors are the cornerstone of our service, and we remain committed to providing opportunities for them to excel long-term with our Navy.
Question: Can Officers use the time to pursue a second degree and then return to a different community with a lateral transfer?
Participants can complete the incurred obligated service in a different community IF selected into that community via the Lateral Transfer process. Career Intermission is entirely separate from the Lateral Transfer process. Therefore, participants need to be prepared to return to Active Duty under their established designator if not selected for another community by a Lateral Transfer Board.
Question: Can enlisted use the time to complete a Bachelor's degree and then return as an Officer?
Enlisted service members can submit an Officer package separate from the Career Intermission Program. If selected to commission, the service member can serve out the Career Intermission obligated service as an Officer rather than in the prior enlisted rating. However, if the participant is not selected, the Sailor must be prepared to complete the Career Intermission OBLISERVE as an enlisted service member. CIP IS NOT A COMMISSIONING PROGRAM.
Question: Can I apply even though I am currently negotiating for orders?
Sailors are encouraged to continue negotiating for orders even if applying for Career Intermission. IAW OPNAVINST 1330.2C, Sailors under PCS orders are ineligible to participate in CIP. Communicate with your detailer if you’re interested.