NAVSCIATTS – Naval Small Craft Instruction and Technical Training School

NAVSCIATTS Naval Small Craft Instruction and Technical Training School

NAVSCIATTS – The Naval Small Craft Instruction and Technical Training School is located at the John C. Stennis Space Center in Mississippi. The command is a center for training international military and law enforcement personnel. NAVSCIATTS is a Security Cooperation / Security Force Assistance schoolhouse operating under the United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) in support of Geographic Combatant Commander’s Theater Special Operations Command (TSOC) priorities.

NAVSPECWARCOM organization chart highlighting NAVSCIATTS (USSOCOM 2018 Factbook, page 23).
NAVSPECWARCOM organization chart highlighting NAVSCIATTS (USSOCOM 2018 Factbook, page 23).

History. The school used to be located in the Panama Canal Zone. It was first established as the Small Craft Inspection and Training Team (SCIATT) at the U.S. Naval Station, Rodman, Panama in 1963 by the U.S. Coast Guard. Operation of the school was transferred to the U.S. Navy in 1969 and redesignated as the Small Craft Instruction and Technical Team. With the closure of U.S. bases in Panama the school was relocated to Mississippi.

Mission. “NAVSCIATTS conducts Foreign Internal Defense (FID) in support of Combatant Commanders in accordance with Commander, U.S. Special Operations Command priorities using Mobile Training Teams (MTTs) and in-residence training to prepare Partner Nations forces to conduct small craft operations in riverine or littoral environments”. [1]

NAVSCIATTS PCAT student fires weapon during scenario driven field training exercise. (Photo from NAVSCIATT Guide Book, April 2017).
NAVSCIATTS PCAT student fires weapon during scenario driven field training exercise. (Photo from NAVSCIATT Guide Book, April 2017).

Training Programs. Over the past two years (2016 and 2017) the school has trained up over 2,000 international military and law enforcement agency personnel from approximately 80 partner nations. The instruction takes place in the form of residence courses and mobile training teams across the tactical, operational, and strategic spectrums. Topics include waterborne operations, maintenance, instructor development and other subjects. [2]

“The facility trains and educates international special operations forces, SOF-like forces and SOF enablers across the tactical, operational and strategic spectrums through in resident and mobile training team courses of instruction, including operations, repairs, sustainment of craft, communications, weapons, small unit tactics, range safety, unmanned aerial systems and intel fusion operations.” [3]

NAVSCIATTS Students in the Patrol Craft Officer - Coastal course conduct classroom navigation exercises. (Photo by Angela Fry, NAVSCIATTS, June 13, 2017).
NAVSCIATTS Students in the Patrol Craft Officer – Coastal course conduct classroom navigation exercises. (Photo by Angela Fry, NAVSCIATTS, June 13, 2017).

NAVSCIATTS Courses. There are a multitude of courses taught at the training facility. The courses can be custom-tailored to the training audience. The courses are divided into three categories:

  • Strategic courses
  • Operational courses
  • Tactical courses

Below is a listing of the courses conducted [4]

  • Strategic
    • Strategic Leaders International Course
    • Partner Nation Instructor Course
  • Operational
    • Diesel Systems Overhaul and Maintenance
    • Outboard Motor Maintenance and Overhaul
    • Technical Welding and Applied Repairs
    • Instructor Development Course
    • UAS Operations and Planning
    • Rule of Law and Disciplined Military Operations
    • Intel Fusion and Operations Integration
    • Expeditionary Logistics and Supply
    • JO/NCO Leadership and Planning
  • Tactical
    • Patrol Craft Officer – Coastal
    • Patrol Craft Officer – Riverine
    • Waterborne Instructor Course Coastal
    • Waterborne Instructor Course Riverine
    • Patrol Craft Advanced Training
    • Combat Lifesaver Course
    • International Small Arms Maintenance
    • International Tactical Communications Course
    • Range Operations Safety
    • SOF Tactical Patrol Leader

Instructor Cadre. There are less than 100 instructors at the school. The commandant for the past few years has been a Navy SEAL. The cadre conducts both in-resident training as well as take part in Mobile Training Teams to foreign countries. Training offered by the cadre is often followed up with advanced training by Special Boat Team or SEAL Team instructors.

NAVSCIATTS small boat crew in training. (Photo from NAVSCIATTS Guide Book, April 2017).
NAVSCIATTS small boat crew in training. (Photo from NAVSCIATTS Guide Book, April 2017).

Boats. The school provides training utilizing 25-foot Boston Whaler Patrol Boats, 25-foot Security Force Assistance Combat Craft, and 38-foot Security Force Assistance Combat Craft.

International Training Audience. The school provides instruction for partner nation personnel from all over the world. One example is the school’s Lake Chad Basin Initiative – which is working through the Trans-Sahara Counterterrorism Partnership to facilitate this training event. The objective of the training is to increase partner nations’ abilities to project force against violent extremist organization safe havens within the Lake Chad region. The students will be armed with U.S.-based maintenance and leadership training prior to the delivery of mission-essential equipment to security forces in the region. Follow-on training by mobile training teams will reinforce and further the capabilities gained from the training at the CONUS based schoolhouse. [5}

Training Location. The location of the the training facility is ideal – this part of Mississippi possesses some of the finest riverine and littoral training areas found within the United States. The facility is located on the Mississippi coast 45 miles (72 kilometers) northeast of New Orleans, Mississippi. Two other Naval Special Warfare commands are located on Stennis – Special Boat Team 22 and Training Detachment Stennis.


References:

NAVSCIATTS Website on USSOCOM Portal
www.socom.mil/navsoc/NAVSCIATTS/

NAVSCIATTS Facebook
www.facebook.com/NAVSCIATTS/

NAVSCIATTS YouTube
www.youtube.com/NAVSCIATTS

Footnotes:

[1] Mission statement from NAVSCIATTS, accessed Dec 2017.
www.socom.mil/navsoc/NAVSCIATTS/mission-statement

[2] USSOCOM, Tip of the Spear, United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM), October 2017, 19.

[3] Ibid.

[4] Listing of courses offered from NAVSCIATTS website as of December 2017.

[5] See “NAVSCIATTS Conducts Inaugural Lake Chad Basin Initiative”, by Angela Fry, DVIDS, December 7, 2017.

About John Friberg 101 Articles
John Friberg is the Editor and Publisher of SOF News. He is a retired Command Chief Warrant Officer (CW5 180A) with 40 years service in the U.S. Army Special Forces with active duty and reserve components.