An Interview with Navy ________________________About Navy SEALsQ Whenever I see the name Navy SEAL, SEAL is always in capital letters. Why is that?A SEAL is an acronym. The name comes from the wide-ranging competencies of theseindividuals on Sea, Air and Land.Q SEALs are considered to be among our elite military forces. Why is that?A Not everyone can become a SEAL. Last year less than 300 graduated the rigoroustraining required to earn this designation, and that’s higher than the 150 or so that would betypical. At the end of the complete training, these individuals will have learned a wide range ofspecialties ranging from diving to parachuting, stealth warfare to paramedical expertise, foreignlanguages to escape and evasion survival.Q Do people need to meet initial qualifications before entering?A Yes. Candidates must pass physical examinations and have good eyesight. They mustscore well on the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery, be U.S. citizens and not morethan 28 years old. Finally, there’s a physical fitness screening that takes place in the delayedentry program and in boot camp.Q When you say rigorous training, what does that entail?A The key training program is called BUD/S, which stands for basic underwaterdemolition/SEAL, but first the individual must go through boot camp and an eight week SEALpreparation course. BUD/S training itself includes physical conditioning, combat diving, landwarfare and parachute jump schools. That alone is more than six months, and then there’sanother six months of SEAL qualification training that presses physical and mental endurance tothe limit. Advanced training for individual specialties, unit work and task group work isgenerally another 18 months.Q How big is a typical SEAL group?A SEALs learn to bring compatible skills together productively in groups as big as 32people and as small a group as 2. Teamwork is one of the mainstays. Adaptability is the other.Q Under what kinds of conditions do SEALs typically work?
A SEALs train for all manner of environments including in deserts, urban areas, mountains,woodlands, jungles and even arctic conditions. Enduring the conditions is important, but so ishaving the specialized skills to handle the high-tech equipment required.Q How long have SEALs been in existence?A The first group of SEALs was formed in early 1962 under the Kennedy administration.While still an elite group, the numbers have increased to address the widespread threats aroundthe world.Q What happens to people who don’t make it all the way through the training?A Most people who begin to engage in SEAL training but fall short in one area discoveralong the way that they have some offsetting skills in another specialty area that is mostgratifying. Being able to uncover those unique capabilities and channel them productivelycertainly cannot be classified as failure. As far as the Navy is concerned, those occurrences areamong our greatest rewards, because it means that the very people we challenged in thebeginning are in turn challenging the Navy to be the finest possible in every specialty area.Q How can someone find out more about the SEAL program and how to qualify?How does one get started pursuing some of these opportunities?A Actually, the best first step is to contact the local recruiting station to find out about anyand all of the jobs that we have available. To reach us, simply contact our station by calling______________, or stop in most afternoons at __________________________________. Ifyou or an out of-town friend want to locate another station near them, visit www.navy.com andclick on “find a recruiter” on the right side of the home page, then enter your zip code number. Acall to 800-4go –Navy will do the trick as well.Additional comment:To put the Navy’s role in perspective, you need to recognize that 70 percent of the world iscovered by ocean, 80 percent of the world’s population lives along coasts and 90 percent of theworld’s commerce travels by water. Protecting all of that is our job, and that makes America’sNavy a global force for good.Sailors serve on land and from the sea; from ships on the water, submarines under the water, andplanes and helicopters over the water – all to meet America’s threats far away so that thosethreats cannot harm us here. We welcome the best men and women to join us in accomplishingtoday’s missions and meeting tomorrow’s challenges.