Coast Guard License

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Saul, Sep 12, 2011.

  1. Saul

    Saul Member

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    This may not be the best place to post this but ill try it anyways.

    Is it difficult to get a Coast Guard (third mate) license (like the equivalent of going to a maritime college) by not going to college? Like if i enlisted in the navy, than after i got out, would it be difficult? Just curious
     
  2. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    I've never had to get a Coast Guard license, but I don't think the fact of enlisting, alone, in the Navy would help much. Might be a good thing to ask some of the Merchant Marine folks though.
     
  3. 2009KPer

    2009KPer Member

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    Short answer - difficult, but not impossible.

    Long answer...

    "Hawsepiping" (non-academy grad) your way to a 3/M license is becoming increasingly difficult these days, as well as expensive, even for experienced civilian mariners.

    Meeting the sea service requirements depends on what you do in the Navy. If you were an officer, I can tell you that you would almost certainly need to be a SWO. I'm not sure what would be the best rate on the enlisted side. Being a desk jockey won't cut it. Also, AFAIK, you cannot get any STCW requirements done using strictly military service - except maybe Basic Safety or Firefighting. You would need those courses to get a 3/M license and the cost for them would come out of your pocket (to the tune of thousands of dollars), unless you're VERY lucky and find an employer willing to pay your way through it. I believe you can get some assessments signed-off onboard by OOD's, but you can't escape the course requirements.

    Don't expect much "sympathy" from the USCG/NMC regarding this. The MM credentialing side of the USCG is quite different from the military side. You could also have to start off with a limited license and then work your way through to the unlimited ones. As someone who has seen both worlds, there is a reason this is a "difficult" transformation - the two sides (Navy and MM) are quite different.

    If you really want to go in the Navy but maintain/keep a 3/M license, you would be way better off going to Kings Point or a state maritime academy and joining their MMR program (get a degree and commission too). Graduate with your license and commission, go Active Duty, become a SWO - keep yourself in a "maritime-like" billet to the extent that you can. You can maintain your license even while on Active Duty. Much easier to do it that way than the reverse (Ie, Navy to MM License).

    Also, gcaptain.com is a great resource for the credentialing/licensing process and there are a number of threads about making the transformation from Navy to MM. There are also threads about general MM life, jobs and the state that the industry is in right now. Poke around.
     
  4. AF6872

    AF6872 Member

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    Don't forget your TWIC which can be a pain for scheduling. Deck or Engineering license tests are standard procedure at Maritime Academys. MM credentials are also a long process. As 2009 says it is quite different. Naval Academy graduates may be qualified but don't have immediate MM license. LITS: You didn't have a license qualification or you just didn't apply for MM deck or engineering?
     
  5. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    Coast Guard officers/enlisted aren't required to have a CG license.
     
  6. 2009KPer

    2009KPer Member

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    Even so, I'm not sure how it works when it comes to STCW. They might have the seatime, but there is no way that the classroom requirements have all been met, simply because the curriculum at USNA is not geared towards merchant shipping (for obvious reasons) and there are many things about a Naval vessel that don't translate to merchant vessels, especially when it comes to cargo. I know the CFR's say that graduation from USNA qualifies one for the 3/M license, but I don't think that's the end all, be all.

    Yup. "CG License" is kinda a misnomer. The license is that of a "U.S. Merchant Marine Officer" which happens to be administered and issued by the U.S. Coast Guard. Actually, to be even more accurate, it is now, as of 2009, a "Merchant Mariner's Credential" (little red book) with an endorsement as an "Officer in charge of a navigational watch". There would be no reason for a Guardsman to need this license for his work in the CG (although, I have heard rumors that you guys are required to take the Nav Rules exam to earn an OOD qualification, or whatever you call it).
     
  7. LineInTheSand

    LineInTheSand USCGA 2006

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    Yep, nav rules aka Rules of the Road. OODs must pass that test, open book and closed book. Also given a number of situations, lights and days shapes by the commanding officer.
     
  8. lovelyfox83

    lovelyfox83 New Member

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    I believe you can get some assessments signed-off onboard by OOD's, but you can't escape the course requirements.
     

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