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FY-2021 Seaman To Admiral-21 Program

Enlisted Commission Program STA-21

Seaman to Admiral-21 (STA-21) is a full-time undergraduate education and commissioning program open to enlisted personnel of all paygrades and ratings who meet the eligibility requirements specified OPNAVINST 1420.1B, the Enlisted to Officer Commissioning Programs Application Administrative Manual.

NAVADMIN 152/20 formally announced submission deadlines for FY-2021. The information below is taken directly from that NAVADMIN.


Deadline for submission of applications for the FY-21 STA-21 program is 1 July 2020. Application packages must be postmarked on or before the deadline date. It is recommended that applications be mailed prior to the deadline as early submission allows timely feedback to the Sailor for submission of missing or illegible documents. Deadline for submission of additional documentation to the package of an applicant is 1 August 2020. No additional documents can be added after this date. The selection board is scheduled to convene in September 2020 and the selectees will be announced via NAVADMIN.

The following target options and core are open for application for the FY-21 Selection Board: Surface Warfare (SWO), Surface Warfare Engineering (SWO/ED), Nuclear (Surface/Sub), Special Warfare, Explosive Ordnance Disposal, Naval Flight Officer, Pilot, Civil Engineering Corps, Nurse Corps and Information Professional.

The following target options have zero select opportunity for the FY-21 Selection Board: Human Resources, Intelligence, Information Warfare, Medical Corps, Supply Corps, Surface Warfare Officer/Information Professional (SWO/IP), Oceanography (OCEANO) and SWO/OCEANO.

The Nuclear (Surface/Sub) target option is now open to Sailors who are serving in the Fleet and hold an active Nuclear Navy enlisted classification (NEC)(N1XX/N2XX). All applicants must be able to begin their first day of class in the first semester of their course work prior to commencing their eighth year of service. See the Nuclear Program Authorization (PA 150A) dated May 2019 for more specific information and all other requirements to apply for the program. Additionally, applicants holding a Nuclear NEC must receive conditional release, in line with NAVADMIN 177/17, if applying for options outside the Nuclear community, from the Nuclear Enlisted Community Manager (OPNAV N133D).

The following information addresses lessons learned from the FY-20 STA-21 selection process and board. This information is provided to preclude common errors:

  1. Of the 323 applications received for FY-20, only 305 were board eligible. A total of 55 were selected to participate in the FY-20 STA-21 Program.
  2. Each year, packages are not considered due to non-qualifying scholastic aptitude test (SAT) or American college test (ACT) test scores, missing commanding officer (CO) endorsement/recommendation, recent non-judicial punishment, missing physical fitness assessment (PFA) cycles, missing or illegible submission of documents, and not meeting program age or PFA requirements.
  3. Minimum eligibility requirements must be met before submitting an application. Applications should be mailed only when fully completed. Officer interview boards shall consist of three officers, the applicant CO may not be a board member and should not submit an interview appraisal sheet. The personal interview of the CO should be conducted only after the application is complete and the officer interview board has submitted their appraisals. The full picture of an applicant academic and officer potential can only be determined by reviewing the SAT/ACT scores, high school/college transcripts and a completed application package.
  4. The CO endorsement is extremely important, especially the ranking of the individual among his/her peers. The endorsement should contain specifics about academic potential, commitment, leadership, service above self, and potential as a naval officer of the individual. CO comments should specify the primary option to which the individual is applying and address how the individual meets qualifications for that option. For junior Sailors with only schoolhouse evaluations, the CO must address this issue in his or her endorsement.
  5. An interview board and nomination review board shall be conducted in line with OPNAVINST 1420.1B. It is recommended that officers of the applicants designator of choice, if available, be asked to participate in the interview/nomination review board to assess the applicant for their community. Officer appraisals provide important insight on the applicant. The appraisal from the board should be a frank and honest assessment of the applicants leadership and academic potential. Appraisal forms should be typed in 10 or 12 point font.
  6. The applicant personal statement should address why the Sailor wants to become an officer, how the Sailors selection would improve the Navy and why the Sailor is applying for a specific option. Sailors must also address any hardships or unique experiences that shaped their character. Junior Sailors should provide information on high school experiences as high school transcripts rarely provide in-depth information on involvement in sports, clubs, volunteer hours, work, etc. Additionally, applicants should address any anomalies in the package (e.g., poor high school grades, college grades, service school grades or poor evaluation performance). The explanation should include details of the situation, how the applicant has overcome these issues and why the applicant will be successful in the future.
  7. The application is a reflection of the applicant. Applicants should review their application in its entirety before submission. They must check for misspelled words and improper grammar, and ensure all transcripts (high school and all colleges) are enclosed.
  8. Within the last year, applicants must have passed the PFA, to include body composition assessment and the physical readiness test with performance in the good category. Due the immediate suspension of the PFA for Cycle-1 2020, minimizing the risk from coronavirus disease, points will be awarded from the most recent observed score from the latest full test taken within a year of application (i.e., spring and fall of 2019). A grade of satisfactory or failure of the above required physical readiness test will make the applicant ineligible.
  9. Qualifying SAT/ACT scores are required. Include any additional recommendations, qualifications or other accomplishments as a part of the package. SAT/ACT can be from tests taken between 1 July 2017 and 1 July 2020 (3 years). Due to recent events, applications will be accepted pending receipt of SAT/ACT test scores.
  10. It is recommended that the command retain a copy of the entire application package. The command copy should not be given to the applicant.

The Navy needs innovative and bold men and women to lead, think creatively, challenge assumptions, and take well-calculated risks. Today's Navy is composed of men and women representing dozens of different ethnic groups and literally hundreds of cultural backgrounds. The Navy's ability to meet leadership challenges relies on having leaders from our entire Navy who reflect our very best.

Applications should be mailed to:

For questions, specific details, eligibility criteria, application requirements and selection procedures, refer to OPNAVINST 1420.1B or contact your command career counselor for the most up-to-date information.

Information obtained from NAVADMIN 152/20 dated May 26, 2020.

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