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  • Career change post 40

    I'm 41, been working in IT since I was 18 and bored of it. I want to go to sea.

    I have a mortgage, a wife, and three children, and I don't live near Blackpool or Portsmouth or Glasgow or Soton, etc, so I was foreseeing difficulties with cadetship. I was still musing over that when I came here and had a look around and I must admit it doesn't make for encouraging reading, particularly the https://www.officercadet.com/forum/d...stry-for-brits thread.

    I wanted to go to sea and stare out of windows. It sounds very much like I missed the boat though.

  • #2
    I'll be honest, you would need to have a cadetship with a company that garunteed a job and I'm not sure how many take cadets around your age. You would need to be able to live on £700/month for 3 years which is the cadet allowance and possibly longer if you are waiting to find a job once qualified.
    I would say that for yourself having a mortgage and dependants that you would need a hell of a lot of money saved up to support yourself throughout your studies.
    If you were able to find the money then I would say go for it, but absolutely not with a tonnage tax company. Can't stress the importance of being garunteed work post cadetship as I know plenty of people who have gone months without a wage because of not finding work.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by shackleguy View Post
      I'll be honest, you would need to have a cadetship with a company that garunteed a job and I'm not sure how many take cadets around your age. You would need to be able to live on £700/month for 3 years which is the cadet allowance and possibly longer if you are waiting to find a job once qualified.
      I would say that for yourself having a mortgage and dependants that you would need a hell of a lot of money saved up to support yourself throughout your studies.
      If you were able to find the money then I would say go for it, but absolutely not with a tonnage tax company. Can't stress the importance of being garunteed work post cadetship as I know plenty of people who have gone months without a wage because of not finding work.
      No cadetship company will base recruitment on the poster’s age, that would be illegal. I’ve never heard of anyone’s age being a barrier to entry in this career, there are plenty of 40+ cadets and a few 50+ cadets.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Bonden View Post
        I'm 41, been working in IT since I was 18 and bored of it. I want to go to sea.

        I have a mortgage, a wife, and three children, and I don't live near Blackpool or Portsmouth or Glasgow or Soton, etc, so I was foreseeing difficulties with cadetship. I was still musing over that when I came here and had a look around and I must admit it doesn't make for encouraging reading, particularly the https://www.officercadet.com/forum/d...stry-for-brits thread.

        I wanted to go to sea and stare out of windows. It sounds very much like I missed the boat though.
        If you are planning on making the move - you'll need to ensure that you have sufficient savings/income from your partner to cover all your financial commitments and cost of living for at least 3 (I would recommend 4) years without any income from yourself - the cash you'll make during the cadetship will barely cover your own expenses.

        Nothing in life is guaranteed, the job prospects on completion are very much a gamble - only you can decide if it's worth it for you - I've been working on cruise ships for 12+ years, have obtained my masters and currently been sat at home for over 1.5 years twiddling my thumbs earning f-all due to COVID screwing us all over... Fortunately, I'm in a good position, but many others weren't so lucky.

        As agibbs said, age itself isn't a barrier to entry - your other commitments 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.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by agibbs98 View Post

          No cadetship company will base recruitment on the poster’s age, that would be illegal. I’ve never heard of anyone’s age being a barrier to entry in this career, there are plenty of 40+ cadets and a few 50+ cadets.
          I did say I wasn't sure about companies that would take him. But yea just wanted to get across the point that post cadetship poses problems of its own in terms of employment opportunities.

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          • #6
            Just a heads up for anyone struggling for work anywhere - I was running a Ltd Co but lost all my clients for obvious reasons early last year. Dusted off an old Class 1 HGV licence that has been gathering dust for the best part of 20 years and had work within 3 days plus non stop phone calls (so many I stopped answering). The UK is currently 50-60 thousand drivers short right now and the scale is very tipped in your favour. Currently on around £2k net pm for taking a trailer to Liverpool, hooking up a new one and returning it to Glasgow. No handballing, home every night, 5 days on/3 off. May be very handy for some people out there I cant recommend it enough even if just as a sandwich filler.

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            • #7
              Thanks for all the replies. I hadn't heard of anything like cadetships that guaranteed a job afterwards. TBH though none of the websites (chiltern, etc) have an _awful_ lot to say; they're very shop front-y without much detail. I don't want to redo the thread I mentioned, but given all the comments in there about cadetships not being "fit for purpose" and no work for deckies, and little more for anyone else, I was thinking more of the (apparently dismal) prospects afterwards, and comments here have usefully brought me right back to the practicality of a cadetship anyway. 700/month wouldn't keep the family going, and I don't suppose you can do the college part of it online even in our covid world, can you?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Bonden View Post
                700/month wouldn't keep the family going, and I don't suppose you can do the college part of it online even in our covid world, can you?
                A lot of the colleges have gone online during Covid to quite mixed results, and I don't know what a lot of their 'return to class' plans are. I can't see them staying online for longer than they have to though, even the college side of this industry isn't the keenest to move with the times.

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                • #9
                  Glasgow college will tell you to pay for a year of halls even though the classes are online and make it mandatory. That's what they done to nautical students as well as a lot of courses. I think they are trying to take as much money as possible of students which I think is disgusting.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Bonden View Post
                    I'm 41, been working in IT since I was 18 and bored of it. I want to go to sea.

                    I have a mortgage, a wife, and three children, and I don't live near Blackpool or Portsmouth or Glasgow or Soton, etc, so I was foreseeing difficulties with cadetship. I was still musing over that when I came here and had a look around and I must admit it doesn't make for encouraging reading, particularly the https://www.officercadet.com/forum/d...stry-for-brits thread.

                    I wanted to go to sea and stare out of windows. It sounds very much like I missed the boat though.
                    I am 45 and started my deck cadetship last September and have received financial help on top of the cadet wages. Age is not a barrier my friend.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Bonden View Post
                      Thanks for all the replies. I hadn't heard of anything like cadetships that guaranteed a job afterwards. TBH though none of the websites (chiltern, etc) have an _awful_ lot to say; they're very shop front-y without much detail. I don't want to redo the thread I mentioned, but given all the comments in there about cadetships not being "fit for purpose" and no work for deckies, and little more for anyone else, I was thinking more of the (apparently dismal) prospects afterwards, and comments here have usefully brought me right back to the practicality of a cadetship anyway. 700/month wouldn't keep the family going, and I don't suppose you can do the college part of it online even in our covid world, can you?
                      I done most of it online from home.👍

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Malcolm Macd View Post

                        I am 45 and started my deck cadetship last September and have received financial help on top of the cadet wages. Age is not a barrier my friend.
                        What sort of financial support did you receive and from which source?

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                        • #13
                          SAAS (you have to be Scottish for SAAS but England have a similar system) Bursary and a very healthy interest free student loan to be paid back at a very low monthly rate IF I get work when qualified .

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                          • #14
                            Have you considered the RFA?

                            They pay the most out of any cadetship (around £15,000) and there would be a high chance of being signed on as well. You'd also work with all British officers which in my opinion is better. There'd be a better social life than your average deep sea company and I'm pretty sure the ships have WiFi.

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                            • #15
                              I'm 41, fed up with working in IT and applied to the RFA, I have received a provisional offer from the RFA, they do pay the highest and a better chance of employment after the cadetship. If you don't take a risk in life you will go nowhere.

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