Thinking about a second career here… I have no experience in maritime industry, but have always been fascinated by it. I would love to eventually progress to 3rd mate unlimited, but I understand that I have to get my time in first. I have done a ton of research but still have some questions!
Is there any way (obtaining a degree, apprenciship, etc) to shorten the time between entry level and AB, or AB and 3rd, or must I go OS - AB - 3rd? That will take many, many years… obviously if that’s what I have to do, then that’s that, but I would appreciate additional options. I do have a bachelor’s already, though not in science.
In order to get a 3rd - unlimited (is that the same as oceans?), do I need to have an AB unlimited also? Do I need to work in oceans as an AB - and to get the AB unlimited, do I need to work in oceans as a OS? Or can I work in great lakes also?
What is shipping season? Do most people work at certain times or seasons? Is it possible to just work as an OS/AB at certain times or for certain periods, e.g. summers, 3 months on, 3 months off, etc? Is it easy or standard to get gigs like that? And if so, do OS/AB usually stay with the same ship or company or ‘float’ around?
Is it hard to get hired as an OS without experience, and what is pay like?
That’s all for now… thanks in advance!