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  • Hello Everyone

    Hello all, just thought I would introduce myself to the forum and officer cadet community.

    I'm a new user and completely new to the Maritime and Shipping Industry but wanting to start and throw myself into a career at sea.
    I've been researching alot between jobs and hope to apply to the many cadetship officer training programs available and hopefully get a chance to train and begin and exciting career. My age (28) and lack of experience in the industry are a real concern of mine, so heres hoping some of you can put my mind at ease or give me some advice to help my chances to gain an entry to the industry. So any tips, information or recommended course anyone can offer at this early stage to aid my chance of success would be greatly appreciated.

    Many thanks in advance and hope to speak to some of you soon.

  • #2
    Hi Leif!

    I know how you feel about age, I'm 26 and I'll be starting at Warsash this month on the FnD course. As far as experiance goes, I've done some casual sailing and resoration in my free time over the years but absolutely nothing that could be considered 'industry'. I thought I'd aged out a couple of years back but it was only when I got talking to a couple of people in the industry that I realised I hadn't.

    I'd suggest going to an open day and having a look around. At the Warsash open day I got chatting to one the course organisers and it surprised me how they were very open to having mixed age intakes. I had a few age related questions during the interview but honestly, I've never felt like being past that college-graduate age was an issue.

    I'm blogging my way through the next few years as I found other peoples blogs to be incredibly helpful so if you'd like a little insight on how the first few months will be as a slightly older graduate, feel free to check it out.


    27//Officer Cadet//Phase Three//Warsash

    My officer cadet blog - SeasboundBySummer.Tumblr.com

    Comment


    • #3
      I started my cadetship at the age of 27 and had the same concerns. My age was never an issue apart from answering (reasonable) questions at the interview stage about my employment history and why I intended to abandon my current career to work at sea. Average age in my class was in the mid twenties and I have met many cadets in their thirties, some in their forties and even one in his fifties!

      A lot lot of companies seem to recognise the value of cadets who have previous workplace experience. So I doubt that will cause you any problems at the applications stage.

      The only challenges I had came from having to live on a cadet's pay having enjoyed a good salary for a few years and dealing with the academic course of study 6 years after leaving full time education, nothing a little prior preparation can't sort out. Good luck!

      Comment


      • #4
        Hello, welcome to the forum. Plenty of guys who started in their late twenties, early thirties and even a few who started in their forties!

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by SeaboundBySunrise View Post
          Hi Leif!

          I know how you feel about age, I'm 26 and I'll be starting at Warsash this month on the FnD course. As far as experiance goes, I've done some casual sailing and resoration in my free time over the years but absolutely nothing that could be considered 'industry'. I thought I'd aged out a couple of years back but it was only when I got talking to a couple of people in the industry that I realised I hadn't.

          I'd suggest going to an open day and having a look around. At the Warsash open day I got chatting to one the course organisers and it surprised me how they were very open to having mixed age intakes. I had a few age related questions during the interview but honestly, I've never felt like being past that college-graduate age was an issue.

          I'm blogging my way through the next few years as I found other peoples blogs to be incredibly helpful so if you'd like a little insight on how the first few months will be as a slightly older graduate, feel free to check it out.




          Hi R,
          Many thanks for your message of reassurance. I guess the age thing is irrelevant if you want something hard enough you'll make it work. I actually stumbled across your blog before joining this forum, will be interesting to follow your progress of the training, see if its something I really want to do. I'm still researching alot at this stage as I'm completely new to the industry and world of shipping, but the idea of a career at sea just really appeals to me at the moment. I'm applying for a few cadetship training schemes with a few companies just trying to get my personal statement cover letters and cv up to scratch to stand out and appeal to the recruitment teams. Is any tips or advise you can give from your experience on this early stage.

          I have been invited to an open day up at in Blackpool at the Fleetwood Nautical College in a couple of weeks time. The place looks great but with being currently based down in the South East its a long slog to get there so I'm in two minds at the moment but at least its on a weekend which makes it easier with work. My preferred training would somewhere closer like Southampton or Portsmouth. Did you attend any open day with Warsash before applying.?

          Look forward to reading your next post. And best of luck with everything.

          Comment


          • #6
            Thanks 'All at Sea' its reassuring to hear you were just a year younger than I am now. My age and lack of experience are my main concerns with being noticed during the application stages. Living on a cadet salary for a few years and living away is not an issue for me in all honesty. Before being made redundant my previous working background was in IT Customer Service so not really related to the industry but gained many transferable skills. So just need to show that I suppose and sell myself well during the application stages.
            Thanks for the advise and reassurance.


            Originally posted by All At Sea View Post
            I started my cadetship at the age of 27 and had the same concerns. My age was never an issue apart from answering (reasonable) questions at the interview stage about my employment history and why I intended to abandon my current career to work at sea. Average age in my class was in the mid twenties and I have met many cadets in their thirties, some in their forties and even one in his fifties!

            A lot lot of companies seem to recognise the value of cadets who have previous workplace experience. So I doubt that will cause you any problems at the applications stage.

            The only challenges I had came from having to live on a cadet's pay having enjoyed a good salary for a few years and dealing with the academic course of study 6 years after leaving full time education, nothing a little prior preparation can't sort out. Good luck!

            Comment


            • #7
              Thanks for the kind words of reassurance 'Young Mariner' hopefully I'll get there before I'm in my 40's.

              Originally posted by YoungMariner View Post
              Hello, welcome to the forum. Plenty of guys who started in their late twenties, early thirties and even a few who started in their forties!

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by leifstarkey View Post
                Hi R,
                Many thanks for your message of reassurance. I guess the age thing is irrelevant if you want something hard enough you'll make it work. I actually stumbled across your blog before joining this forum, will be interesting to follow your progress of the training, see if its something I really want to do. I'm still researching alot at this stage as I'm completely new to the industry and world of shipping, but the idea of a career at sea just really appeals to me at the moment. I'm applying for a few cadetship training schemes with a few companies just trying to get my personal statement cover letters and cv up to scratch to stand out and appeal to the recruitment teams. Is any tips or advise you can give from your experience on this early stage.

                I have been invited to an open day up at in Blackpool at the Fleetwood Nautical College in a couple of weeks time. The place looks great but with being currently based down in the South East its a long slog to get there so I'm in two minds at the moment but at least its on a weekend which makes it easier with work. My preferred training would somewhere closer like Southampton or Portsmouth. Did you attend any open day with Warsash before applying.?

                Look forward to reading your next post. And best of luck with everything.
                I'll do it before any of the other 'old timers" do. If you're unhappy about going to college in the NW because you live in the SE how are you going to cope with spending half of your year on the other side of the world when you qualify?

                Sent from my Moto G (4) using Tapatalk
                io parlo morse

                Comment


                • #9
                  Warsash normally have an open day around now too, why not pop along to that, I'm sure it says on their website when it will be.
                  “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

                  – Mark Twain
                  myBlog | @alistairuk | flickr | youtube Views and opinions expressed are those of myself and not representative of any employer or other associated party.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Many thanks Alistair. Yep - I found it on Monday and have registered to visit with them at there upcoming open day. Shall look forward to it.


                    Originally posted by alistairuk View Post
                    Warsash normally have an open day around now too, why not pop along to that, I'm sure it says on their website when it will be.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Fair Point, but of course I would love and be privileged to train with any college, was just a preference though at this early stage.
                      It falls over a weekend too and the two don't clash so I should go and visit both as I've got the chance.
                      Many thanks for your advise R - best of luck with starting your training.



                      Originally posted by endure View Post
                      I'll do it before any of the other 'old timers" do. If you're unhappy about going to college in the NW because you live in the SE how are you going to cope with spending half of your year on the other side of the world when you qualify?

                      Sent from my Moto G (4) using Tapatalk

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by leifstarkey View Post
                        Hi R,
                        Many thanks for your message of reassurance. I guess the age thing is irrelevant if you want something hard enough you'll make it work. I actually stumbled across your blog before joining this forum, will be interesting to follow your progress of the training, see if its something I really want to do. I'm still researching alot at this stage as I'm completely new to the industry and world of shipping, but the idea of a career at sea just really appeals to me at the moment. I'm applying for a few cadetship training schemes with a few companies just trying to get my personal statement cover letters and cv up to scratch to stand out and appeal to the recruitment teams. Is any tips or advise you can give from your experience on this early stage.

                        I have been invited to an open day up at in Blackpool at the Fleetwood Nautical College in a couple of weeks time. The place looks great but with being currently based down in the South East its a long slog to get there so I'm in two minds at the moment but at least its on a weekend which makes it easier with work. My preferred training would somewhere closer like Southampton or Portsmouth. Did you attend any open day with Warsash before applying.?

                        Look forward to reading your next post. And best of luck with everything.
                        No Worries! Off the top of my head, just be honest about your enthusiasm. For every slightly older cadet they see seeking a career change I reckon they must see a 16/17 year old school leaver looking at the merchant navy without being 100% sure what they want to do. You're an investment on the sponsor companies part, so they want to see enthusiasm and commitment regardless of age. Mention any achievements you've had through work - they don't have to be massive, but just something that shows you are a hardworking team member. For example, I mentioned that a few times I was asked to consider applying for a team leader role within my previous job - I didn't take it but still, it's a reflection on my work ethic so it's worth mentioning. Are there any boat yards near by that do refits? It could be worth asking around and getting involved - a bonus is you generally get a day or two sailing for every couple of days you help, which is fun!

                        Also, this might sound silly, but try to find a hobby that you can do at sea. Both companies I interviewed with had a few questions about how I'd fill my downtime whilst at sea - I can see it being a poor career choice for someones who's only interest is playing footy with their mates or mountain climbing.

                        I'd apply for any open day you can reasonably attend. Warsash seem to have a couple every year so I attended the August/September one and a local open day in Cowes.

                        Hope that helps!
                        27//Officer Cadet//Phase Three//Warsash

                        My officer cadet blog - SeasboundBySummer.Tumblr.com

                        Comment

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