Another Military Sealift Command thread


either chevron or conoco is advertising for a messman, don’t remember which. saw it today on line.


Greetings, first thanks to all. Your questions, answers, jokes and sarcasm has been a pleasure to read.

I accepted a job offer from MSC almost two months ago and have been going through the pre employment process since. So far I’ve gotten everything completed to my knowledge except my physical which is schedule for next week and pretty much NEO once I’m declared fit for duty. My question is being that i have my third mates license but i was hired as a OS, how would I go about becoming a third mate for MSC eventually?


This has come up before on this forum. I’ve worked with a couple guys in similar circumstances and I thought it was a smart way to start out.
As a mate, I’d consider having “walked the walk” an advantage when dealing with certain deck types but I’d keep the license to myself with the deck crew until reassigned.
There’s probably someone here who’s done it recently and can recommend the best way to deal with it at the office level.


Annually MSC has promotion boards. You complete a promotion package and submit it. The package is evaluated and best candidates are offered temporary or perminant promotions. Third mate boards are in April/May.

In the mean time a shipboard temporary promotion to AB or 3/M is a possibility at any time without a promotion package.

I would remind your detailer that you have a license and ask to be sent to a ship as AB. That’s likely. Asking to go out as 3/M these days is unlikely to get much.

Good luck.


In the past it was nearly impossible to advance from from AB to 3M, people had to quit and apply as 3M to move up.


Capt_Phoenix is correct. And it still applies.


Except that it’s not true. I did it and many of my friends did it, too. There was a window between perhaps 2008-2011 when MSC would first hire from the academies and then fill any vacancies with hawsepipers. (There wouldn’t be any vacancies so no one got promoted.) Those days are gone.

I suspect that this year they promoted more ABs to 3/M then they hired. I’d bet next year will be the same.


Once again thanks to all. One more question. I’m curious as to if anyone has gotten an NEO date recently and for which rate. Or if there is any possible way to find out the NEO schedule. I’ve checked on MSC website which states each week or every 2 weeks.


All rates attend the same NEO class. Being declared fit for duty does not get you an automatic NEO date. Just means your fit for duty.

There are posts of individuals found fit for duty and not get an NEO…and then required to go through the physical again after a year has passed. The longest I’ve seen from " fit for duty" to NEO was two years. The soonest I’ve seen was for Monday the following week. So don’t quit your day job…even when you do get to NEO. You will lose people “fired/let go” during NEO for various reasons such as: English test failures, eQip failures, late for class, talking too loudly, wrong political party, wrong color socks, too ugly, not ugly enough, etc…

MSC will call you when “They” are ready. Trying to be proactive about it will lead to frustration and resentment.


You are right about being proactive. You’ll make yourself crazy. In Feb. I have been waiting two years. I hope thats the longest anyone has ever waited because hopefully I’ll get the call soon. I’ll have to take the equip, physical, and drug test again but thats no big deal. I am lucky though. I am working and still have a job. It is an AB position I applied for. All I do is give them a call once a month to make sure I’m still in the system. They can never give me any advice or information other than just hang in there and wait. I dont understand why they would put people through all that and then make them wait. If anyone has any information about NEO or heard anything let me know. Until then I will just play the waiting game.


I heard January 29th for the next NEO


MSC just called me and they are sending me to NEO February 5!!! I’ve been waiting years to finally get a definite date and it’s finally happened! I’m beyond thankful right now. MSC will call you at the most unexpected and random time so keep grinding away at your normal jobs and they will call you eventually! I am going as an OS by the way. Good luck future fellow mariners.


Congrats man. I was rooting for you.


February 5th means you should have a ship by mid to late April…to stand watch…relentlessly. We need OSs like a bum needs a bath. We currently rate 6 OSs. We have none. Nothing, Nada. And it has been that way for months.


Are you short on ABs too? Because I am qualified up to AB on my MMC. Either way, my wife is about to have a baby and I can’t wait to get to the fleet! So from what you’re saying, there will be overtime? :slight_smile:


We are short ABs. But you will need Able Seafarer Deck endorsement to sail as an AB. We do have OSs (with Special and Limited AB tickets) in MSC sailing as ABs but…they have the required Able Seafarer Deck International endorsement.

There is no OT while in NEO, Training or sitting in the Pool.


Sounds good… I do have the Able Seafarer Deck endorsement. Are you on the west coast? What’s your current position? Hope to see you out there!


Go to the Navy Mess for lunch. It’s a short walk from the pool.


Food and atmosphere are much better at the O Club.


If you already have Able Seafarer Deck, ask the first mate to let you sail as an AB. If there is an opening (and there always is), then you’ll work and get paid as an AB. Just keep in mind that when you leave the ship you will revert back to an OS.