AFCO & Bursary

Hello everyone,

I went into the AFCO a couple of days ago to start the application process to become a weapons engineering officer however after travelling an hour on the bus there I was told to apply online. After returning home I tried to begin the process online however the only thing I could find was to register my interest for a phone call which I have done and having spoken to the advisor I was told to go to the AFCO to get application papers. Can somebody confirm this is correct as I have a job to fit in around the two hour trip to the AFCO.

I am applying with the intention of getting a bursary as I have just finished my second year of a four year course, so my question is would I be out of pocket as assuming I get in within the next year (big assumption I know), I would only get £8k bursary as opposed to the £12k golden hello currently offered on joining or would I get the extra 4k on completion of training?

Also as an extra query for anybody in the engineering world, why does it take so much longer i.e. 10-12 years (based on what I have read is the average time for promotion to Lt commander, which is a key criteria) to get chartered status, when engineers working for people like BAE and Babcock are charted within about 5 years of joining?

Welcome to Rum Ration, SHB.

The drive at the moment is to process potential candidates in the first instance via a civilian call centre. The call centre is tasked to ask callers about their age, gender, nationality, residency, education and interest in a Naval career. If you tick all the boxes, the call centre sends out details of careers in the Royal Navy and an invitation to visit the AFCO on a specific day, usually for an Initial Careers Presentation, which is done in a group, although individual appointments are possible. The call centre then lets the AFCO know who to expect and when.

I think that the problem may have arisen because you have spoken to the call centre and asked about applying for a bursary, which is something it doesn't deal with. Ideally, the call centre operator should have asked you whether you would like to register your interest in applying to be a WEO and then taken you through these basic questions, before getting you an AFCO booking and then sending you out further information by post.

On the assumption that you have not had your details taken already, I would suggest ringing them on 08456 07 55 55 and not mentioning bursaries. They are open until 9 pm, so I would suggest giving them a call now and saying that you would like to express your interest in applying to be a WEO. Just that. They should then process you in the way that I have described.

Let us know how you get on.
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Sunny -Weapon Engineer Officer: an Engineer does Engineering. A small point, but one senior WEs are fairly adamant about.Chartered Status: the story of the RN and CEng is a long and sorry one. In summary, if you are academically qualified and your job takes you somewhere where you can demonstrate CEng-like skills (i.e. the development of new technology and it's application to the RN) then you can apply for CEng whenever you like. If the RN sends you on a job path that is more RN than Engineer then the Institutes (various) have agreed that on completing your WEO assignment at sea you will have 'ticked all the boxes'. The latter route is typically 10 - 12 years.You should remember that in the main being a Naval Engineer is primarily about the application and maintenance of exisiting (and quite old!) technology, not the creation of 'bleeding edge' tech. It's a good job, you work with great people and it can offer some interesting career routes.

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