Course Preps CEC Officers for Leadership Roles

Story by Amber Vaglica, Naval Education and Training Command

WASHINGTON – Twenty-nine active-duty and 10 Reserve Civil Engineer Corps (CEC) officers completed an annual five-day leadership course at the Washington Navy Yard Feb. 2.

Twenty-nine active-duty and 10 Reserve Civil Engineer Corps (CEC) officers complete an annual five-day leadership seminar course at the Washington Navy Yard Feb. 2. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Gary Granger)


Developed and coordinated by the Civil Engineer Corps Officers School in Port Hueneme, California, the Civil Engineer Corps Commander (Select) Leadership Seminar prepares lieutenant commanders selected for promotion and commanders recently promoted for the next position in their careers. Guest lectures and group discussions with flag officers, senior executive service members and Chief of Civil Engineers Rear Adm. Bret Muilenburg covered major topics of relevance for a new CEC commander.

Students received updates from Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC), Commander, Navy Installations Command and Naval Construction Group. They also learned about the most recent leadership philosophies, mission strategies, and program management development within NAVFAC and the Naval Construction Force.

“The opportunity to network and refresh old friendships was a great way to begin our new challenging adventure as commanders,” said Lt. Cmdr. Blake Burket, Office of the Chief of Naval Operations, Assessment Division (OPNAV N81), who described the course as an opportunity to better understand their upcoming roles and responsibilities. For most, their new roles will affect operational readiness and worldwide contingency and expeditionary operations for the CEC community.

The course also included practical exercises where students worked in teams to develop solutions to key strategic issues and provided their recommendations to Muilenburg. Challenges included joint operations planning and execution leadership and management with an emphasis on command responsibilities, media relations and further career planning.

“The strategic thinking exercise was extremely helpful in getting us to break barriers in how to look at, analyze and think of the big picture,” said Cmdr. Gregory Philips, NAVFAC headquarters. “The team building and camaraderie between active-duty and Reserve component students and thoughts from top leadership were a great experience.”

CECOS provides Seabees, CEC officers, facility engineers and environmental professionals with the necessary skills, knowledge and education to enhance lifelong learning and to provide quality support to the fleet.
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