Commentary | Aug. 17, 2021

The Coast Guard Leadership Development Center completes first Senior Leader Transition Course  

By Janki Patel, MyCG Writer

Lieutenant commanders and mid-level civilian equivalents have a new opportunity for professional development. The Coast Guard Leadership Development Center (LDC) in New London, Connecticut, has launched a Senior Leader Transition Course to prepare rising leadership within the workforce. The program is six weeks long consisting of a blended learning approach with the first four weeks completed online, followed by a two-week resident session on-site. 

Building on the success of the legacy Midgrade Officer and Civilian Transition Course–2 (MOCTC-2), SLTC focuses on facilitating the leadership development of active duty and reserve lieutenant commanders and civilian GS-13s.  

SLTC encompasses the best of MOCTC-2, streamlined and evolved to leverage the latest in leadership development practices and adult learning theories. The legacy course was 22 weeks long and only held twice a year.  

The redeveloped course is much shorter and will be held frequently to dramatically increase the number of students able to attend the course, while providing a learning experience using the best of adult-learning techniques and leadership development disciplines. New learning platforms supported by FORCECOM’s Modernized Ready Learning to ensure the course was both engaging and enjoyable for participants who were balancing their duty obligations, while also completing pre-residency coursework.  

The three course learning outcomes were:  

  • Decision-Making: Assess, develop, and articulate reasoned judgments on tactical and strategic issues. 
  • Strategic and Systems Thinking: Develop and interpret the role of strategic and systems thinking throughout your world of work. 
  • Teaming, Shared Leadership, and Change Management: Generate the processes and capabilities to lead the collaboration with teams and external stakeholders to execute innovative and positive change. 

The student cohort brought insight from time spent at the Department of Defense (DoD) and backgrounds in private industry and business. This fostered a collaborative learning environment, leading to impactful dialogue on a myriad of issues from creating a diverse workforce and inclusive environment to innovative thinking.  

SLTC graduates reflect on their training: 

“I can very clearly say this was by far the best and most engaging Coast Guard-led training I have ever received in my 15 plus years of service. BZ!” 

“I also found the Commandant’s discussion of Diversity & Inclusion very illuminating. To me, his declaration that it was a long-term goal explains why it deserves constant, strong emphasis to make sure we do not lose sight of it among our many other priorities.” 

“I’m now in a much better position to provide my staff with a framework to better understand this process (Coast Guard Strategy), to make more informed decisions, and to better envision how their individual work assignments fit into the overarching goals and strategic plans at different levels within the organization.” 

Future Courses: 

Prospective students can expect the SLTC experience to consist of engaging, meaningful and developmental experiences and activities. The staff’s goal is to inspire graduates of SLTC to accept the lifelong responsibility to develop themselves and those around them well after the program concludes.  

Any active duty and reserve O-4 or GS-13 looking to improve their current leadership capabilities and willing to commit to the engagement and self-reflection necessary to achieve true lasting growth is highly encouraged to submit an electronic training request for SLTC. 

For further information, please contact the SLTC course chief, Lt. Cmdr. George MacDonnell at (860) 701-6245.