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Member Training

Member training The Coast Guard Auxiliary provides multiple opportunities for members to earn certifications and save lives. The Vessel Examination & Partner Visitation (V) Directorate hosts the renowned Vessel Examiner (VE), Program Visitor (PV) and Auxiliary Life Jacket Study (AUXLWO) programs, and their respective trainings. Auxiliarists can learn here what it takes to be part of these exciting opportunities. Members should also login to view the Auxiliary Classroom offerings below.
Vessel Examiner A potential Vessel Examiner must review the Vessel Safety Check Manual (M16796.8A) for all directions to the Vessel Safety Check (VSC) program. Additional guidance is available for checks on personal water craft (PWCs) and checks on paddlecraft.
A trainee must then complete the Vessel Examiner Exam (VE) online at the National Testing Center. A practice exam is available online for a trainee to review their knowledge of the VE materials. The trainee's final test is to conduct five VSCs under the supervision of a certified VE. The five VSCs must be reported on form ANSC 7038. Maintaining certification To keep an active certification as a VE, you must conduct at least five VSCs per year. Failure to do five VSCs means you must conduct two supervised VSCs in a year or certification will lapse after five years. A VE must also review the annual workshop, now available for 2024 (and as a PDF), and complete the self-attestation form after reviewing it. Other resources for Examiners Potential Vessel Examinations staff officers at the flotilla, division and district levels can take advantage of these informative job descriptions. The 2022 annual National Vessel Examination Summary is also now available.

Program Visitor A potential Program Visitor must review the RBS Visitation Program Manual (M16796.3C) for all directions to the PV program. A trainee must then complete the Recreational Boating Safety Program Visitor Exam (MDV) online at the National Testing Center. The trainee's final test is to conduct two program visits under the supervision of a certified PV. The two visits must be reported on form ANSC 7046. Maintaining certification To keep an active certification as a PV, you must conduct at least four visits per year. Failure to do four program visits means you must conduct two supervised visits in a year or certification will lapse after five years. A PV must also review the annual workshop, now available for 2023 (and as a PDF). Other resources for Visitors PVs can use this helpful brochure to guide their discussions during program visits. Potential Program Visitation staff officers at the flotilla, division and district levels can take advantage of these informative job descriptions. The 2022 annual RBS Visitation Program Summary is also now available.

Life Jacket Wear Study Observer A potential AUXLWO Study Observer must review the AUXLWO Standard Operating Procedures. A trainee must then complete the online training program available from partner organization JSI. A quiz is required to move on to practical training. Training requires use of observation equipment and reviewing data quality reports. The trainee's final test is to achieve 98% accuracy on two supervised observations. Maintaining certification To keep an active certification as an AUXLWO Observer, you must remain active in the study and complete an annual refresher training program. Observers have to repeat the full course in their second year of certification. Other resources for Observers AUXLWO observers can use this helpful PDF presentation to share the story of the AUXLWO program.
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