What is COMPASS?

COMPASS is a 12-hour Team mentoring program developed by spouses for spouses.  COMPASS is open to all Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard spouses and is presented over three days (four hours per day).  COMPASS provides new and experienced spouses with information and resources that will help them be successful in their Navy journey.

What does COMPASS cover?

Using a standardized curriculum, COMPASS introduces participants to many aspects of the Navy lifestyle: the Navy mission, history, customs and traditions, rights and benefits, pay, deployments, moving, interpersonal communication, and investing in self and the community.  To learn more, read the full Course Outline.

Who presents the COMPASS course?

Mentors that are part of an area team present COMPASS.  COMPASS Mentors are trained volunteer Navy spouses who have experienced Navy life and possess the passion to mentor other spouses, help them gain knowledge, and establish a peer network.

How much will COMPASS cost?

COMPASS is free.  Course materials and snacks are provided for participants and mentors.

Who is sponsoring COMPASS?

The standardized COMPASS Program, developed by volunteer spouses, is sponsored by Naval Services FamilyLine.  FamilyLine is a non-profit 501(c)(3), volunteer organization serving Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard families around the world.  Rosemary Ellis, the program’s founder, is the COMPASS Program Director and serves on the Naval Services FamilyLine Board.

Where are COMPASS sessions being held?

COMPASS sessions are in locations all over the world.  For a most updated list, view the Locations and Registration section at

How can I become a Mentor?

COMPASS is looking for Navy experienced (three years as a Navy spouse) spouses who want to become mentors and be a part of this exciting program. Mentors are required to attend COMPASS as participants and attend eight additional hours of Mentor Training.

How long does it take to get COMPASS started in an area?

 It takes approximately six to eight months to implement a COMPASS team. Initially, there must be spouse interest. A team forms with interested and experienced potential Mentors. Those potential Mentors attend a complete COMPASS Session, and then Total Team Training is held. After Total Team Training, the team practices. When the team is ready, COMPASS sessions are scheduled and held.

Has anything like this been done before?

COMPASS is based on the Marine Corps program called L.I.N.K.S.  Program Director, Rosemary Ellis attended a L.I.N.K.S. session with three other Navy spouses in Kaneohe Bay, HI.  This Team worked together to create a similar program called SUBS.  The COMPASS program was developed at FamilyLine when Rosemary was the Chairman of Naval Services FamilyLine and also Ombudsman-at-Large for then CNO, Admiral Jay Johnson.  The SUBS program transitioned to COMPASS in March 2002.

Course materials and snacks are provided free-of-charge, thanks to the generosity of FamilyLine supporters and donors.

New to the Navy?  Check out these additional resources.
  • Anchors Aweigh - If a COMPASS class is not provided in your area, or you are not an active duty spouse, Anchors Aweigh provides spouses, parents and loved ones a brief overview of what to expect of the Navy life.

  • Checklist for New Military Spouses - important information for new military spouses.

  • MyNavy Family App - The first tool by the U.S. Navy developed for Navy spouses and Sailors’ families that combines authoritative information from more than two dozen websites into a single, convenient application.

  • Navy Spouse 101- an online introduction to Navy life. Sign up and search for the course "LWRW 100819".

  • Quick Tips for New Military Spouses - tips to help with military benefits.

  • Social Customs and Traditions - a free publication introducing spouses to Navy traditions and etiquette.

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