MCCES welcomes back students, highlights special services on base

4 Jan 2006 | Lance Cpl. Regina N. Ortiz

The Marine Corps Communication-Electronics School began the New Year with a presentation called ‘Back in the Saddle’ at the Sunset Cinema Jan. 4.

In less than three hours, students learned how to start off on the right track for 2006.

The intent of the ‘Back in the Saddle’ presentation was to ensure students have the tools in their back pocket, so in the event they need to reach back there, they know where to go for help, said Maj. Matt Baker, Marine Corps Community Services deputy director, who kicked off the presentation.

“Education is prevention,” said Baker.

By continuously speaking to Marines about the available resources on base, Marines will know where to turn for help with their problems, ranging from personal, financial, family and education, Baker explained.

Baker spoke briefly about the following programs:

• Chaplain's Religious Enrichment Development Operations focuses on personal growth, character development, team building, ethical leadership, spiritual growth and marriage enrichment, according to CREDO’s official Web site. This is a great program for those who have difficulty adapting to the Marine Corps, said Baker.

• Prevention & Relationship Enhancement Program is for couples seriously dating, engaged, or married. Couples learn to effectively communicate and keep fun in their relationship according to the Marine Corps Community Services Web site.

• The Family Advocacy Program is available to assist those who have experienced abuse. This program helps with stress management, anger management, child and teen parenting, financial management and building self-esteem associated with abuse.

• There is professional family and individual counseling available at the Family Counseling Center in building 1437. For more information call 830-6345.

• There is also online counseling at

Representatives from other services aboard the Combat Center attended the presentation to discuss what they offer, such as Larry Wasdin, the program coordinator of Personal Financial Management.

“Who likes money?” said Wasdin.

The program is set up to assist Marines and their family members to budget their income, pay off debts and make savings plans. They also provide financial advice for those who are relocating, transitioning out of the military, or who want to retire comfortably, said Wasdin.

Andrea Katolin, Learning Resource Center education specialist, gave MCCES students an insight on how to use education to move up in the ranks, or to develop a strong resume after ending active service. With the Montgomery G.I. Bill and military tuition assistance, a college degree is easy to attain, she said.

A representative from the Robert E. Bush Naval Hospital, Elaine Grossman, spoke to the crowd about proper nutrition. People tend to go off the health track during the holidays and need a refresher of healthy eating habits, she said.

Students were reminded about proper serving amounts, along with receiving healthy meal suggestions.

“This was a good presentation,” said Pfc. Michael Wilkinson, 19-year-old native of Simi Valley, Calif. “It’s neat, there is so much in the Marine Corps to help all of the young Marines out.”
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