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Northrop Grumman Donates Navigation Training Software to U.S. Naval Academy

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Northrop Grumman
: 14 January, 2009  (Company News)
Northrop Grumman Corporation’s Sperry Marine business unit has contributed a gift-in-kind of navigation interactive courseware (ICW) to the U.S. Naval Academy Foundation to support navigation training programs at the Academy.
The donation, valued at more than $3 million, will be used by the Academy’s Department of Seamanship and Navigation to instruct midshipmen in the operation of advanced electronic navigation systems. Since 2001, Northrop Grumman has donated more than $9 million of navigation software, services and training to the Foundation.

The company’s Sperry Marine business unit developed the ICW lessons to provide end-user training for its Voyage Management System (VMS) navigation software, which uses state-of-the-art electronic charting systems to automate traditional pencil-and-paper-chart navigation techniques. The 16 ICW lessons cover all aspects of VMS operations. They incorporate feedback from the U.S. Navy fleet, as well as course critiques from Sperry Marine’s classroom training programs.

“We truly appreciate this generous gift-in-kind from Northrop Grumman, which has a longstanding history of philanthropy in support of the navigation training programs of the Naval Academy,” said Kevin Reeds, director of corporate and foundation relations, U.S. Naval Academy Foundation. “With this donation, Northrop Grumman has become the Foundation’s largest corporate donor.”

Northrop Grumman’s Sperry Marine unit, along with seven other corporate donors, was honored in a ceremony on the field at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium between quarters of the Navy-SMU football game on October 25, 2008. John DeMaso, vice president and general manager of Northrop Grumman’s Naval and Marine Systems Division, represented Sperry Marine.

“This donation is intended to help the Academy’s training programs keep pace with the electronic Navigation Systems throughout the U.S. Navy fleet,” DeMaso said. “It will aid not only midshipmen classroom instruction but will also provide a training refresher for navigation instructors and faculty. The ICW and VMS software donated by Northrop Grumman will permit midshipmen to train on the equipment they will likely encounter as they arrive for initial sea duty assignments as newly commissioned officers. We are very proud to continue our eight-year gift-in-kind program and appreciate the opportunity to help support the professional training of our future sea service leaders.”

Sperry Marine’s VMS is currently the only navigation system certified by the Navigator of the Navy and Chief of Naval Operations to meet the requirements for naval electronic chart display and information systems, and is the standard Navigation Software used throughout the U.S. Navy fleet. VMS-based Navigation Systems are either installed on or under contract for more than 175 surface ships and submarines.

Organized as a non-profit 501(c)3 organization, the U.S. Naval Academy Foundation is structurally separate from the U.S. Naval Academy and managed by an independent board of directors. The Foundation’s mission is to support, promote and advance the mission of the Naval Academy by working in conjunction with Academy leadership to identify strategic institutional priorities, and by raising, managing and disbursing private gift funds that provide a margin of excellence in support of the nation’s premier leadership institution.

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