U.S. NAVY BUILDER (BU) BALL CAP DEVICE

In December of 2015, the U.S. Navy made a significant change affecting Sailors who are pursuing careers in three of the source ratings for the U.S. Navy’s Naval Construction Forces, colloquially known as Seabees.

Until that time, Sailors in the Builder (BU), Engineering Aide (EA), and Steelworker (SW) ratings who had reached a paygrade of E9, or Master Chief Petty Officer, were merged into a new rating known as Constructionman Master Chief (commonly called Master Chief Constructionman and abbreviated CUCM). But NAVADMIN 294/15, released on December 21, 2015, combined the Senior Chief Builder, Engineering Aide, and Steelworker ratings into the new Constructionman Senior Chief rating (CUCS). The change applies to both active-duty and Reserve Sailors

The goal of the change is to give veteran Sailors greater opportunities for career advancement, offer more diversity in their career paths, and reflect the changes in duty assignment that have been introduced into the various ratings over the years. Because Sailors who have reached Senior Chief status have spent a considerable amount of time in service—Builders and Steelworkers typically reach the Senior Chief rate after almost seventeen years, while it takes Engineering Aides over eighteen-and-a-half to achieve that milestone—giving them the opportunity to expand their career horizons while simulatenously drawing upon their vast amounts of experience and knowledge can only be described as a “win-win."

One thing that will not change with the creation of the CUCS ratings, however, is where Sailors will be assigned. The sea-shore flow for Sailors who achieve the CUCS rating will adhere to the flow that is designated for their original source rate (BU, EA, or SW).
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