References in Text
The date of the enactment of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2016, referred to in subsec. (c)(1), is the date of enactment of Pub. L. 114–92, which was approved Nov. 25, 2015.
2018—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 115–232 substituted “that translate into civilian occupations.” for “related to military training and skills that—
“(1) are acquired during service in the armed forces; and
“(2) translate into civilian occupations.”
2016—Subsec. (a)(1). Pub. L. 114–328, § 561(a), struck out “incident to the performance of their military duties” after “in the armed forces”.
Subsec. (c)(1). Pub. L. 114–328, § 561(b)(1), substituted “meets one of the requirements specified in paragraph (2).” for “is accredited by an accreditation body that meets the requirements specified in paragraph (2).”
Subsec. (c)(2). Pub. L. 114–328, § 561(b)(2), added par. (2) and struck out former par. (2) which read as follows: “The requirements for accreditation bodies specified in this paragraph are requirements that an accreditation body—
“(A) be an independent body that has in place mechanisms to ensure objectivity and impartiality in its accreditation activities;
“(B) meet a recognized national or international standard that directs its policy and procedures regarding accreditation;
“(C) apply a recognized national or international certification standard in making its accreditation decisions regarding certification bodies and programs;
“(D) conduct on-site visits, as applicable, to verify the documents and records submitted by credentialing bodies for accreditation;
“(E) have in place policies and procedures to ensure due process when addressing complaints and appeals regarding its accreditation activities;
“(F) conduct regular training to ensure consistent and reliable decisions among reviewers conducting accreditations; and
“(G) meet such other criteria as the Secretary concerned considers appropriate in order to ensure quality in its accreditation activities.”
2015—Subsecs. (c) to (e). Pub. L. 114–92 added subsec. (c) and redesignated former subsecs. (c) and (d) as (d) and (e), respectively.
2014—Pub. L. 113–291 amended section generally. Prior to amendment, section related to payment of certain expenses to obtain professional credentials.
Statutory Notes and Related Subsidiaries
Improvements to the Credentialing Opportunities On-Line Programs of the Armed Forces
Pub. L. 116–283, div. A, title V, § 578, Jan. 1, 2021, 134 Stat. 3649, provided that:
“(a) Study on Performance Measures.—The Secretary of Defense shall conduct a study to determine additional performance measures to evaluate the effectiveness of the Credentialing Opportunities On-Line programs (in this section referred to as the ‘COOL programs’) of each Armed Force in connecting members of the Armed Forces with professional credential programs. The study shall include the following:
The percentage of members of the Armed Force concerned described in section 1142(a) of title 10
, United States Code, who participate in a professional credential program through the COOL program of the Armed Force concerned.
The percentage of members of the Armed Force concerned described in paragraph (1) who have completed a professional credential program described in that paragraph.
The amount of funds obligated and expended to execute the COOL program of each Armed Force during the five fiscal years immediately preceding the date of the study.
Any other element determined by the Secretary of Defense.
“(b) Information Tracking.—
The Secretary of Defense shall establish a process to standardize the tracking of information regarding the COOL programs across the Armed Forces.
To carry out this section, the Secretary of Defense may coordinate with the Secretaries of Veterans Affairs and Labor.
“(d) Report.—Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act [Jan. 1, 2021], the Secretary of Defense shall submit to the Committees on Armed Services of the Senate and House of Representatives a report on—
the study conducted under subsection (a); and
the process established under subsection (b), including a timeline to implement such process.”
Programs To Facilitate the Award of Private Pilot’s Certificates
Pub. L. 116–92, div. A, title V, § 560B, Dec. 20, 2019, 133 Stat. 1393, provided that:
“(a) Programs Authorized.—
Each Secretary of a military department may carry out a program under which qualified participants may obtain a private pilot’s certificate through an institution of higher education with an accredited aviation program that is approved by such Secretary pursuant to subsection (c).
“(b) Participant Qualifications and Types of Assistance.—
“(1) In general.—In carrying out a program under subsection (a), the Secretary of a military department shall prescribe—
the standards to be met for participation in the program; and
the types of assistance, if any, to be provided to individuals who participate in the program.
“(2) Uniformity across military departments.—
To the extent practicable, the standards and types of assistance prescribed under paragraph (1) shall be uniform across the military departments.
“(c) Approved Institutions of Higher Education.—
“(1) In general.—
In carrying out a program under subsection (a), the Secretary of a military department shall maintain a list of institutions of higher education (as that term is defined in section 101 of the Higher Education Act of 1965
(20 U.S.C. 1001
)) through which an individual participating in the program may obtain a private pilot’s certificate.
“(2) Qualifications and standards.—
Any institution of higher education included on a list under paragraph (1), and any course of instruction toward obtaining a private pilot’s certificate offered by such institution, shall meet such qualifications and standards as the Secretary shall prescribe for purposes of the program. Such qualifications and standards shall include a requirement that any institution included on the list award, to individual participating in the program, academic credit at such institution for any portion of course work completed on the ground school course of instruction of such institution in connection with obtaining a private pilot’s certificate, regardless of whether the participant fully completed the ground school course of instruction.
“(d) Annual Reports on Programs.—
“(1) In general.—
Not later than February 28, 2021, and each year thereafter, each Secretary of a military department shall submit to Congress a report on the program, if any, carried out by such Secretary under subsection (a) during the preceding calendar year.
“(2) Elements.—Each report under paragraph (1) shall include, for the program and year covered by such report, the following:
The total number of participants in the program.
The number of private pilot’s certificates awarded to participants in the program.
The number of participants in the program who fully completed a ground school course of instruction in connection with obtaining a private pilot’s certificate.”
Pilot Program on Earning by Special Operations Forces Medics of Credit Toward a Physician Assistant Degree
Pub. L. 115–232, div. A, title VII, § 735, Aug. 13, 2018, 132 Stat. 1819, provided that:
“(a) In General.—
The Assistant Secretary of Defense for Health Affairs may conduct a pilot program to assess the feasibility and advisability of partnerships between special operations forces and institutions of higher education, and health care systems if determined appropriate by the Assistant Secretary for purposes of the pilot program, through which special operations forces medics earn credit toward the master’s degree of physician assistant for military operational work and training performed by the medics.
The Assistant Secretary shall conduct the pilot program for a period not to exceed five years.
“(c) Clinical Training.—
Partnerships under subsection (a) shall permit medics participating in the pilot program to conduct clinical training at medical facilities of the Department of Defense and the civilian sector.
The evaluation of work and training performed by medics for which credits are earned under the pilot program shall comply with civilian clinical evaluation standards applicable to the awarding of the master’s degree of physician assistant.
“(1) Initial report.—Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act [Aug. 13, 2018], the Secretary of Defense shall submit to the Committees on Armed Services of the Senate and the House of Representatives a report on the pilot program that shall include the following:
A comprehensive framework for the military education to be provided to special operations forces medics under the pilot program, including courses of instruction at institutions of higher education and any health care systems participating in the pilot program.
Metrics to be used to assess the effectiveness of the pilot program.
A description of the mechanisms to be used by the Department, medics, or both to cover the costs of education received by medics under the pilot program through institutions of higher education or health care systems, including payment by the Department in return for a military service commitment, tuition or other educational assistance by the Department, use by medics of post-9/11 educational assistance available through the Department of Veterans Affairs, and any other mechanisms the Secretary considers appropriate for purposes of the pilot program.
“(2) Final report.—Not later than 180 days after completion of the pilot program, the Secretary shall submit to the committees of Congress referred to in paragraph (1) a final report on the pilot program. The report shall include the following:
An evaluation of the pilot program using the metrics of assessment set forth pursuant to paragraph (1)(B).
An assessment of the utility of the funding mechanisms set forth pursuant to paragraph (1)(C).
An assessment of the effects of the pilot program on recruitment and retention of medics for special operations forces.
An assessment of the feasibility and advisability of extending one or more authorities for joint professional military education under chapter 107
of title 10, United States Code, to warrant officers or enlisted personnel, and if the Secretary considers the extension of any such authorities feasible and advisable, recommendations for legislative or administrative action to so extend such authorities.
“(f) Construction of Authorities.—Nothing in this section may be construed to—
authorize an officer or employee of the Federal Government to create, endorse, or otherwise incentivize a particular curriculum or degree track; or
require, direct, review, or control a State or educational institution, or the instructional content, curriculum, and related activities of a State or educational institution.”
Enhancement of Mechanisms To Correlate Skills and Training for Military Occupational Specialties With Skills and Training Required for Civilian Certifications and Licenses
Pub. L. 113–66, div. A, title V, § 542, Dec. 26, 2013, 127 Stat. 762, provided that:
“(a) Improvement of Information Available to Members of the Armed Forces About Correlation.—
“(1) In general.—The Secretaries of the military departments, in coordination with the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, shall, to the maximum extent practicable, make information on civilian credentialing opportunities available to members of the Armed Forces beginning with, and at every stage of, training of members for military occupational specialties, in order to permit members—
to evaluate the extent to which such training correlates with the skills and training required in connection with various civilian certifications and licenses; and
to assess the suitability of such training for obtaining or pursuing such civilian certifications and licenses.
“(2) Coordination with transition goals plans success program.—
Information shall be made available under paragraph (1) in a manner consistent with the Transition Goals Plans Success (GPS) program.
“(3) Types of information.—The information made available under paragraph (1) shall include, but not be limited to, the following:
Information on the civilian occupational equivalents of military occupational specialties (MOS).
Information on civilian license or certification requirements, including examination requirements.
Information on the availability and opportunities for use of educational benefits available to members of the Armed Forces, as appropriate, corresponding training, or continuing education that leads to a certification exam in order to provide a pathway to credentialing opportunities.
“(4) Use and adaptation of certain programs.—
In making information available under paragraph (1), the Secretaries of the military departments may use and adapt appropriate portions of the Credentialing Opportunities On-Line (COOL) programs of the Army and the Navy and the Credentialing and Educational Research Tool (CERT) of the Air Force.
“(b) Improvement of Access of Accredited Civilian Credentialing and Related Entities to Military Training Content.—
“(1) In general.—
The Secretaries of the military departments, in coordination with the Under Secretary of Defense for Personnel and Readiness, shall, to the maximum extent practicable consistent with national security and privacy requirements, make available to entities specified in paragraph (2), upon request of such entities, information such as military course training curricula, syllabi, and materials, levels of military advancement attained, and professional skills developed.
“(2) Entities.—The entities specified in this paragraph are the following:
Civilian credentialing agencies.
Entities approved by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs, or by State approving agencies, for purposes of the use of educational assistance benefits under the laws administered by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs.
“(3) Central repository.—
The actions taken pursuant to paragraph (1) may include the establishment of a central repository of information on training and training materials provided members in connection with military occupational specialities that is readily accessible by entities specified in paragraph (2) in order to meet requests described in paragraph (1).”
Pilot Program on Receipt of Civilian Credentialing for Skills Required for Military Occupational Specialties
Pub. L. 112–81, div. A, title V, § 558, Dec. 31, 2011, 125 Stat. 1418, as amended by Pub. L. 112–239, div. A, title V, § 543, Jan. 2, 2013, 126 Stat. 1737, provided that:
“(a) Pilot Program Required.—
Commencing not later than nine months after the date of the enactment of this Act [Dec. 31, 2011], the Secretary of Defense shall carry out a pilot program to assess the feasibility and advisability of permitting enlisted members of the Armed Forces to obtain civilian credentialing or licensing for skills required for military occupational specialties (MOS) or qualification for duty specialty codes.
“(b) Elements.—In carrying out the pilot program, the Secretary shall—
designate not less than three military occupational specialities or duty speciality codes for coverage under the pilot program;
consider utilizing industry-recognized certifications or licensing standards for civilian occupational skills comparable to the specialties or codes so designated; and
permit enlisted members of the Armed Forces to obtain the credentials or licenses required for the specialities or codes so designated through civilian credentialing or licensing entities, institutions, or bodies selected by the Secretary for purposes of the pilot program, whether concurrently with military training, at the completion of military training, or both.
The Secretary shall complete the pilot program by not later than five years after the date of the commencement of the pilot program.
“(d) Report.—Not later than one year after commencement of the pilot program, the Secretary shall submit to Congress a report on the pilot program. The report shall set forth the following:
The number of enlisted members who participated in the pilot program.
A description of the costs incurred by the Department of Defense in connection with the receipt by members of credentialing or licensing under the pilot program.
A comparison of the cost associated with receipt by members of credentialing or licensing under the pilot program with the cost of receipt of similar credentialing or licensing by recently-discharged veterans of the Armed Forces under programs currently operated by the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Department of Labor.
The recommendation of the Secretary as to the feasibility and advisability of expanding the pilot program to additional military occupational specialties or duty specialty codes, and, if such expansion is considered feasible and advisable, a list of the military occupational specialties and duty specialty codes recommended for inclusion in the expansion.”
Ex. Ord. No. 13860. Supporting the Transition of Active Duty Service Members and Military Veterans Into the Merchant Marine
Ex. Ord. No. 13860, Mar. 4, 2019, 84 F.R. 8407, provided:
By the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, and to promote employment opportunities for United States military veterans while growing the cadre of trained United States mariners available to meet United States requirements for national and economic security, it is hereby ordered as follows:
Section 1. Policy. It is the policy of the United States to support practices and programs that ensure that members of the United States Armed Forces receive appropriate credit for their military training and experience, upon request, toward credentialing requirements as a merchant mariner. It is further the policy of the United States to establish and maintain an effective merchant marine program by providing sufficient support and resources to active duty and separating service members who pursue or possess merchant mariner credentials.
A robust merchant marine is vital to the national and economic security of the United States. Credentialed United States merchant mariners support domestic and international trade, are critical for strategic defensive and offensive military sealift operations, and bring added expertise to Federal vessel operations. Unfortunately, the United States faces a shortage of qualified merchant mariners. As our strategic competitors expand their global footprint, the United States must retain its ability to project and sustain forces globally. This capability requires a sufficient corps of credentialed merchant mariners available to crew the necessary sealift fleet. Attracting additional trained and credentialed mariners, particularly from active duty service members and military veterans, will support United States national security requirements and provide meaningful, well-paying jobs to United States veterans.
Sec. 2. Definition. For the purposes of this order, the term “applicable service” includes any of the “armed forces,” as that term is defined in section 101(a)(4)(A) [sic] of title 10, United States Code.
Sec. 3. Credentialing Support. (a) To support merchant mariner credentialing and the maintenance of such credentials, the Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of Homeland Security, with respect to the applicable services in their respective departments, and in coordination with one another and with the United States Committee on the Marine Transportation System, shall, consistent with applicable law:
(i) Within 1 year from the date of this order [Mar. 4, 2019], identify all military training and experience within the applicable service that may qualify for merchant mariner credentialing, and submit a list of all identified military training and experience to the United States Coast Guard National Maritime Center for a determination of whether such training and experience counts for credentialing purposes;
(ii) With respect to National Maritime Center license evaluation, issuance, and examination, take all necessary and appropriate actions to provide for the waiver of fees for active duty service members, if a waiver is authorized and appropriate, and, if a waiver is not granted, take all necessary and appropriate actions to provide for the payment of fees for active duty service members by the applicable service to the fullest extent permitted by law;
(iii) Direct the applicable services to take all necessary and appropriate actions to pay for Transportation Worker Identification Credential cards for active duty service members pursuing or possessing a mariner credential;
(iv) Ensure that members of the applicable services who are to be discharged or released from active duty and who request certification or verification of sea service be provided such certification or verification no later than 1 month after discharge or release; and
(v) Ensure the applicable services have developed, or continue to operate, as appropriate, the online resource known as Credentialing Opportunities On-Line to support separating service members seeking information and assistance on merchant mariner credentialing.
(b) The United States Committee on the Marine Transportation System shall pursue innovative ways to support merchant mariner credentialing, including through continuation of the Military to Mariner Initiative as appropriate, and shall provide a yearly status report on its efforts under the provisions of this order to the President through the White House Office of Trade and Manufacturing Policy.
Sec. 4. General Provisions. (a) Nothing in this order shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:
(i) the authority granted by law to an executive department or agency, or the head thereof; or
(ii) the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.
(b) This order shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.
(c) This order is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.