July 10, 2014, NAVAL SUPPORT ACTIVITY, Bahrain (NNS) – Naval Support Activity (NSA) Bahrain depends on its Naval Security Force (NSF) Academy to train and prepare its students to stand guard and keep base personnel, equipment and families safe and ready to respond at a moment’s notice.
The NSF Academy serves a dual purpose, training students on the required annual training as well as teaching them about NSA Bahrain’s mission and how that affects them. This includes training on all aspects of Antiterrorism Force Protection such as force protection conditions (FPCON), potential terrorist threats in the Middle East region, watchstanding, weapons familiarization and the use of deadly force.
“The role we play is to ensure that all the watchstanders have the most up to date knowledge and ensure they have no doubt when it comes to being able to confront any situation that comes their way,” said Master-at-Arms 2nd Class Jason Turner, lead instructor for the NSF Academy. “Everyone in the training department has stood watch at the gate before they were selected to be instructors at the academy, so we know the difficulties MAs will face standing watch at the gate. We teach them how to protect themselves from potential threats and how to deal with the heat and long hours they must dedicate to the mission here.”
The NSF Academy has developed its program to address issues that are specific to Bahrain, as well as, preparing students to handle situations in multiple roles, from gate stander to patrol supervisor. Students are taught a wide range of law enforcement skills to help them perform any task that may be asked of them during their time at NSA Bahrain. Searching techniques of vehicles and personnel, alarm response procedures for fires, medical assistance, and active shooters, to writing traffic tickets are all a part of the NSF Academy learning experience. With so many different aspects of law enforcement to teach, instructors make sure they accommodate for their student’s different levels of experience.
“We get a mix of seasoned MAs as well as those coming straight from MA A-school,” said Turner. “There are so many different jobs in the MA community it is easy to forgot one aspect of the job while doing another. There is always a positive response from the senior MAs telling us how happy they are that the NSF Academy covers all the basics they may have forgotten. At the same time, we have an opportunity to share knowledge with the junior MAs.”
Master-at-Arms Seaman Hanna Jackson, NSF Academy student, appreciates the efforts the NSF Academy makes to help its junior students get the most out of the tutelage from more experienced MAs.
“The instructors are extremely helpful and easy to approach,” said Jackson. “It helped that the instructors would use real life situations or incorporates what they have done as a Master-at-Arms in their career. It was a great way to refresh what I learned in A-school and the knowledge that I have gained in the academy will benefit me and others when we go back to our sections.”
The NSF Academy instructors are honored to have a positive impact, helping to contribute to the base security by training those who will be standing watch.
“I enjoy passing on all the knowledge and experience I have gained as Master-at-Arms,” said Turner. “NSF Bahrain is the largest security department in the Navy, meaning what we teach here will have an impact that will carry on to other commands. I want to make sure that influence is positive and that it will better the MA community.”
For more news from Naval Support Activity Bahrain, visit www.navy.mil/local/nsabahrain/.