Theses

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  • Publication
    WAIVING THE STANDARDS: THE EFFECT OF RECRUITMENT WAIVERS IN THE ROYAL AUSTRALIAN AIR FORCE
    (Monterey, CA; Naval Postgraduate School, 2024-03) Woodside, Jennifer K.; Tick, Simona L.; Ahn, Sae Young; Department of Defense Management (DDM); Department of Defense Management (DDM)
    The Australian Defence Force faces a recruitment challenge, prompting all services to increasingly rely on recruitment waivers to temporarily match enlistment standards with personnel requirements. This study assesses the growing utilization of waivers by the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF), evaluating how they may affect RAAF’s ability to both achieve its recruiting requirements and not incur losses during time spent under training. Using linear probability models to analyze historic enlistment and waiver issuance data from 2016 through 2021, this study reveals a statistically significant yet negligible effect of recruitment waivers on the successful service of past aviator cohorts. An examination of waiver categories, characteristics and military occupation groups uncover further positive and negative effects. Medical waivers exhibit a significant negative impact on service, while waivers related to driver’s license, physical fitness, security background and criminal history can positively influence select occupation groups. The findings serve as positive indicators for the effectiveness of the current recruitment waiver policy. Based on the observed impact from prior usage, the continued strategic deployment of waivers is recommended ensuring their use aligns with RAAF’s risk tolerance and recruitment needs. It is essential for RAAF to recognize that waivers are not a solution for the recruitment challenge but rather a tool to enhance the strategy into the future.
  • Publication
    UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES: AN ANALYSIS OF THE IMPACT OF INCREASED TIME-IN-SERVICE PROMOTION REQUIREMENTS ON NCO RETENTION AND PERFORMANCE IN THE USMC
    (Monterey, CA; Naval Postgraduate School, 2024-03) Young, Mark W.; Ahn, Sae Young; Department of Defense Management (DDM); Bacolod, Marigee
    In 2019, the Marine Corps announced that the minimum required time-in-service and time-in-grade for promotion to sergeant and staff sergeant would increase in 2020. Since that policy was enacted, a 2,700-sergeant deficit has been identified. This study confirms that deficit is linked to the promotion policy change by estimating the impact of the increased promotion requirements on the retention and job performance of corporals and sergeants. To estimate the policy impact, I mimic an experimental research design and employ a difference-in-differences framework, comparing Marines in jobs where the average time to promote increased the most against Marines in jobs where promotion timing stayed the same or changed minimally. The results show that corporals in the treatment group were significantly more likely to separate after the new policy was enacted, while sergeants in the treatment group were less likely to separate. Additionally, corporals in the treatment group were more likely to be meritoriously promoted to sergeant after the new policy was in effect, though the effect of the policy on the performance of treated corporals was negligible. Based on these results, I recommend that the Marine Corps focus retention incentives and lateral entry initiatives towards military occupational specialties that have been most affected by this policy, as well as further evaluate meritorious promotion management to enhance its effectiveness in selecting individuals for early advancement.
  • Publication
    UPDRAFT FORCING MECHANISMS IN DEEP MARINE CONVECTION DRIVEN BY COLD POOLS
    (Monterey, CA; Naval Postgraduate School, 2024-03) Wasserman, Jessica B.; Powell, Scott; Meteorology (MR); Witte, Mikael
    Aircraft and rawinsonde data collected during the CALifornia Investigation of Convection over Ocean (CALICO) field experiment between February and March of 2022 were analyzed to detail the size and magnitude of in-cloud cumuliform updrafts. Sampled convection generally occurred following wintertime cold-front passages off the central California coast, with much of the convection growing to the 6 km high tropopause and organizing into “arcs” driven by cold pools. Large-eddy simulations using Cloud Model 1 (CM1) were conducted to augment observations and characterize the three-dimensional cloud properties within cold-pool-driven convection to subsequently investigate what processes (both thermodynamic and dynamic) within the atmospheric boundary layer and free troposphere control the upward acceleration of negatively buoyant updrafts located behind a cold pool boundary. The effect of vertical wind shear on isolated and organized mesoscale convection is simulated. Organized convection is able to reach the tropopause despite the presence of strong vertical wind shear that inhibits isolated convection. Within the cold pool, the presence of negative buoyant but ascending updrafts was due to the presence of small pockets of strong upward acceleration caused by an upward-oriented pressure gradient force associated with the dynamic perturbation pressure.
  • Publication
    THEOLOGY OF CONTROL: CHRISTIAN NATIONALIST VIOLENCE AND HOSTILITY
    (Monterey, CA; Naval Postgraduate School, 2024-03) White, John; Brannan, David W.; Halladay, Carolyn C.; National Security Affairs (CHDS)
    Adherents of Christian Nationalism consider themselves as leaders of a crusade within society, but this freighted term also suggests that Christian Nationalism poses a meaningful threat to the United States. It reflects a fundamentalist ideology that poses a threat to religious freedom and democratic principles. This thesis explores the movement’s potential for violence and extremism by examining its tenets, self-perceptions, goals, and intentions from leaders’ own words by analyzing their theological, political, and cultural beliefs. Christian Nationalists have used this ideology to seek political power, often manipulating religious followers to achieve their end goals. This quest, embedded in an ideology that reinterprets traditional Christian values, such as loving one’s neighbor, as exclusive only within their group, fosters divisiveness and hostility toward democratic principles. This ideology, as created by Christian Nationalism, has not only incited violent acts, but has also signaled a potential rise in Christian Terrorism within the United States.
  • Publication
    DETERMINANTS OF NAVY PROMOTIONS: IDENTIFYING AND UNDERSTANDING THE POTENTIAL PREDICTORS FOR PROMOTION WITHIN THE NAVY MEDICAL SERVICE CORPS
    (Monterey, CA; Naval Postgraduate School, 2024-03) Winston, Paul; Hartmann, Latika; Ahn, Sae Young; Department of Defense Management (DDM); Department of Defense Management (DDM)
    The Navy Medical Service Corps uses sub-specialty career roadmaps to communicate expectations and opportunities to all officers. All the roadmaps share a common theme: billet diversity across three groupings—Military Treatment Facility, Operational, and Staff duty. This study measures the benefits of duty-billet diversification, as encouraged in the roadmaps, by estimating the effects of career paths taken by officers in the three major specialty groups within the Medical Service Corps: Healthcare Administrators, Healthcare Clinicians, and Healthcare Scientists. Using a linear probability model to estimate promotion probabilities, I find that the effects of duty-billet diversity vary among each specialty grouping. Healthcare Administrators can improve their promotion probabilities by focusing on Military Treatment Facilities and Staff billets. Healthcare Scientists could enhance their promotion probabilities by concentrating on Staff billets. Healthcare Clinicians are the only track that shows benefits from holding billets in all three categories. The only commonality among all three groups is the significant benefit to promotion probability when serving in an Executive Medicine billet.