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Fast-track vs full training

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  • Fast-track vs full training

    I'm just wondering if someone can give me some advice on this. I've just finished an (mech) engineering degree and am in the process of applying to various companies for sponsorship, some of whom offer the fast-track route, and others don't. I've got my ILoA from the MCA which states that I am exempt from the general engineering sciences.

    What I'm wondering, is it a good idea to go down the fast-track route, or would it be more beneficial to do the full 3 years? Looking for advice from other cadets and qualified officers.

  • #2
    A guy on the foundation Marine Engineering degree here has a Mechanical Engineering degree and is just doing the full thing.

    Not really advice, but it was relevant

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    • #3
      I know a guy who had similar qualifications to you, but he was exempt from all theory work in the college, ( he had a doctors or masters in mechanics or something like that ) and he was only needed to do the workshop hours, soon as he did that he was sent of too sea for his minimum sea time needed, came back, finished his TRB, qualified, think he completed the course in like 15 months or something.
      Life at sea is a life for me

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      • #4
        there is generally a few theory classes that you will need, but they are fitted in with the fast track program, from a educational point of view it really isnt worth redoing the sicence part, as the MCA believe what you have done is suitable, so really the workshop skills the bits on the laws etc and the sea time will have you at the same place in a much quicker time,
        you can take it with a pinch of salt, but i prefer it with a nip of whisky

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        • #5
          Cheers for the replies, was kinda as I expected, but was nice to get some confirmation. Now all I need to do is shine at the interview(s)!

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          • #6
            Hey, sorry for the late reply. I?m currently on the EOOW fast track, at STC.

            Definitely go fast track if you can. I have looked at the level of work that is required through the ordinary course and you would be bored of the theoretical Science A & B work. The level of the subjects is much lower than a degree, and you would be repeating yourself for the majority; there are a few marine based areas that you might not have done yet, but they are easily picked up.

            I also checked on the second Engineers math exam, that we might eventually have to do as well, and that is only just above A-Level maths. That can be bypassed if you apply for the exemption and send your degree and transcript in for reassessment. They are also pushing me through my second engineer?s Technical drawing while I?m there.
            The time period for qualification is considerably less. I?m scheduled for 16 months pay, which I am also getting paid slightly more than cadets on the main course. However, my company is pushing and timing all my sea time so I will hopefully qualify by December next year, so maybe 13-14 months.

            At the moment I am doing:
            1. Workshop based learning, which is two full days a week. This I hopefully will complete in a few weeks time, it depends on your skill and speed at getting through the required pieces set by the MCA, after that I have them days off!
            2. I also have to spend a few hours in the plant workshop, to appreciate the actual maintenance and repair side before joining ship.
            3. The first 4 weeks I had a day in the welding workshop, finished that now, so I now have Wednesday mornings and Friday afternoons off.
            4. One afternoon of electrical workshop/ theory.
            5. 4 Hours of Engineering Knowledge, to prepare me for the Engineering General and Motor exams. These are a little out of my depth as they are meant for people who have been onboard and had some experience. However I?m still picking up a lot of information.
            6. Finally, this last week and next week, I am doing all my STCW95 Short courses.

            I am due to go to sea 23rd December, and will be doing 2 blocks of 4 months away, with a month?s holiday in-between. The normal sea phase for engineering cadets is after 6 months college time, I will be going after 3.

            Hope that clears any confusion of what the fast track is about!

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            • #7
              I was a graduate conversion; it took pretty much 18 months all told, mostly workshop with a wee bit of marine engineering theory, plus the same oral prep sessions as the direct entry cadets.
              '... English is about as pure as a cribhouse whore. We don't
              just borrow words; on occasion, English has pursued other languages
              down alleyways to beat them unconscious and rifle their pockets for
              new vocabulary.' - James Davis Nicoll

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