University etc

Discussion in 'Joining Up - Royal Navy Recruiting' started by Sentenashi, Sep 28, 2009.

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  1. Right, I'm being bombarded my teachers to start thinking about university. I don't want to go to university.

    What are the options if I fail selection? My preference would be to apply as early as possible, and if I fail apply to uni.

    What is the earliest I can apply for an officer place as opposed to a scholarship? And can I do my uni application when I'm doing all that and cancel it if I get a place at BRNC?

  2. There's no ironclad commitment to a university if they offer you a place you can decline or differ it as you want to but its probably best to not muck them about too much so as long as you give them reasonable notice it should be cool. The only people who might give you gyp are the student loans lot so be careful what you sign in regards to them. No idea about scholarships probably best to ask the AFCO. All the best
  3. I am the same age as you I guess (upper sixthform 17/18). I am currently working my way through the selection process as we speak, PJFT and medical next month.
    I would apply to university just incase something goes tits up in the selection. Like AM said, you can always cancel last minute, lots of people do (especially forgein students, so they are used to it)

    I would apply to university, but I am lucky enough to have a really good backup plan, IF it fails.
  4. If you don't want to go to University then why treat it as a backup option at all? It's expensive and you won't benefit from that expense unless you actually want to be there.
  5. Personally I would say if you don't want to go, then don't go, the application process for officer can now take anywhere up to a year so I would say if you are just starting upper sixth then its perhaps time to start the ball rolling now.

    As far as a backup (not saying you won't pass AIB but it is wise to consider the options and given your age it is not unlikely) I would encourage you to think outside the university box. Again I have no crystal ball but there are a number of areas at the AIB you can really control, naval knowledge, fitness, current affairs, practicing psycometric tests, maths etc.

    There are also a number of areas you can't firmly control, these mainly centre on your life experience, leadership abilities, teamwork skills, calmness under pressure etc. The most common reason for not quite passing AIB in school leavers is this area. The board will either reccomend you don't come back at all (hopefully they don't in your case) or that you go away and get some life experience before coming back.

    Now you can either go and get a job at your local supermarket or in an office, in which case you won't have a great chance of experiencing much worth shouting about or you can do something more constructive.

    There are a multitude of organisations that run gap years which are more than just travelling around Thailand getting pissed at full moon parties, you can go and volunteer in a developing country, teach english as a foreign language, go mountaineering, all of which develop leadership, independence, confidence etc. Go back to the board after this and when they say "what have you done to develop yourself since your last visit" you will be able to really impress them, plus you'll have the time of your life.

    Of course this is only a backup and hopefully you won't need it, start the process and do all you can to give yourself the best chance of passing first time, but don't be pushed down the uni road if you don't wan't to be - it really isn't right for everyone and schools find it all too easy to ignore that these days.

    Check out some of these if any of this has tickled your fancy:


    Real Gap

    Projects Abroad

  6. I agree with Chris. I also think that a lot of people go to University, because their school or parents have suggested them to, or they have got it into their heads that they need to go to university in order to get a well paid job, or its just the next plot on the educational timeline that needs to be ticked off. It doesnt really seem for me tbh. I know a lot of people that have been (inc my sister) She managed to get a 2:1 despite bunking lessons and going out drinking 4/5 times a night. Don't know about you, but I would rather do something more productive. Its a lot of time and money wasted on a certificate imo.
    Exactly! I have a friend who did this after A-levels and he has had the time of his life! Hes travelled all over the world, then he wanted to actually go back and help people out. Hes working with Unicef, teaching in the slums of India, hitchhiking from East to West coast of America, Backpacking across NZ and Aus. I would love to do a ski season in Canada.
  7. Before completely discounting university a couple of points to consider. First no matter how certain you are now that you will stay in the RN for a full career till 55 remeber many who have joined with that intention change their view at some point during their service. On that basis it may make sense to have something up ones sleave so as to speak. The other thing to consider is that for many jobs a degree is the basic entry point today. If you do not have a degree your CV will never get any where mear the real sift point as you will not meet the basic job spec so your CV will go straight in the bin. IN the job I am in now I would not be hired today.
  8. True. That's why I guess its lucky to be entering as a pilot. I can't imagine a Submarine Officer will find it easy to find a new job when leaving the service.
    About AIB not accepting lads our age because of not enough life experience; This is why I am apply as a voluntary firefighter when I turn 18 for the local firestation, as part of my DofE scheme. Also have lots of other stuff, but not going to bore you with it.
    What would you guys recomend for gain Life experience. Afterall we are 17, 18 at max, we are in full time education and are restricted by parents or not being over 18 of commitments otherwise.
  9. So you think that being a qualified service pilot will open more doors in civie street han being an occifer in the submarine service?
    Think again, there are more qualified civilian pilots chasing flying jobs than vacancies and it has been that way for anumber of years
  10. And submariners have an understanding of matters nuclear that the power industry is keen to harness!

    Don't assume if you don't know the facts.
  11. Failing that they can become drag queens :p with their relevent experiences
  12. I'm not in the upper sixth, I've just started year 12, I'm 16. My understanding was that you can apply when you're 17, which in my case would still be in year 12.

    Atleast, I understand and hope.
  13. You don't apply when you're 17, you apply at a certain point in the year, it's not based on age. I can't remember when the UCAS application process starts and ends (I did mine 4 years ago) so you should ask one of your teachers.

    You said in your opening post that you don't want to go to University. If you're considering doing something you don't want to do then why not get a job? At least that way you get paid instead of running up a huge debt (my student loan stands at over £20,000 and is increasing by about £300 a year).
  14. At 16 the chances are that you know nothing about university, in all truth. You need to get some visits done, not just wandering about the campus, but going to a department that you could be interested in, and learn about the courses.

    University isn't like school - either in terms of the learning process, or in terms of the extra-curricular stuff. All the clubs, groups, societies are run by the students, not by the lecturers, for example.

    The pros of going to university include a) most of your mates will b) you'll get a recognised qualification that will last a while, (even if you join the RN and get chopped/med'ed out), c) you'll develop as a person, with your own age group.

    The cons are a) cost and b) possibility of dropping out part way through so incurring costs, and wasting time.

    The RN wants to take more 18 y/o Mids into BRNC, hence the in-Service degree scheme, but be aware that Dartmouth and flying training are tough calls, and that extra three years maturity may get you through things that an 18 y/o struggles with.

    What were your GCSE grades, and what are your AS subjects, and what grades are realistic? If you think you'll get As and/or Bs then go to university.

  15. I'm working in a pub for £5p/h because I dropped out of college, not sure if the RN will actually accept me because of my foot. I regret dropping out of college because I have 0 fallback options at the moment if the RN doesn't work out.

    At least if you go to university, you can join and officer training corps or a University Royal Naval unit.

    I believe you want to be a pilot, right? What if your eyesight doesn't meet the requirements or you fail your FATs?

    At least if you go to uni you'll have had some experiences, become more mature for the AIB and probably had a few decent parties :wink:

    Here's a quote for you:"The best laid schemes o' mice an' men / Gang aft agley."
  16. Yes. I am friends with a LOT of commercial airline pilots and even the recruiting officer for a major airliner. He said that ex-forces (particularly RAF) pilots get snapped up pretty much straight away and are highly preferenced over civi pilots who have learnt to fly with a civi school and have hours in simulators.

    I now understand that I was being ignorant about SS though.
  17. I am an ex \submarine officer, and started my first civvie job the Monday after leaving the service the friday before. Since then I have not been unemployed for more than a weekend, and that is after nealry 35 years on the retired list. As a service pilot you are almost unemployable without retraining, why would an airline pay for that when they can pick up type qualified pilots in the open market.
  18. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    The further education dilemma:

    Hypothetical triplets A,B & C, who pass everything at first attempt, based on current rates of pay:

    All achieve minimum of 5 GCSE's A*-C (Including maths & English).

    A: Joins as Rating aged 16

    B: Goes to 6th Form then joins as Officer

    C: Goes to 6th Form, followed by uni, then joins as Officer.


    up to 2 years later.

    A: Initially earns £205 per week (Net) starting pay & learns a trade, gaining in-service qualifications & experience. Goes on to earn around £31,680 over 2 years, whilst siblings gain A Levels

    B: Earns £30 per week EMA for two years, possibly takes on a part-time job to augment income. Passes AIB at 16, earns £1050 scholarship per year. Gains sufficient A levels to join RN- Passes selection, starts as an Officer on £15, 268, passing out of BRNC on £24,132

    C: Earns £30 per week EMA for two years, possibly takes on a part-time job to augment income. Passes AIB at 16, earns £1050 scholarship per year. Gains sufficient A levels- Passes AIB, earns Bursary (£1500 per year or £4000 per year as engineer) & Reserved place, starts university.


    2-3 Years later

    A: Completes task Book for Leading Hand. Promoted to Leading Hand after 4 years, now earning £27,051 per year, goes for Upper Yardsman (officer selection), passes AIB. Undergoes training at BRNC, passes out at S/Lt, now earning £29,000. Now has 5 years practical service experience. Starts OU degree whilst serving, has already earned a total of around £87,000

    B: Promoted to Lieutenant earning around £37,172 . Now has 3 years practical service experience. Starts OU degree whilst serving. Has already earned a total of around £67,400

    C: Passes selection, joins as S/Lt. (£12, 000 Golden Hello if an Engineering grad) Awarded 2.5 years seniority. Has a Degree. Can expect £15-£20,000 student debt, will earn £29,006 first year of service.

    All figures approximate. All cock-ups mine.
  19. I wouldn't bank on scheme A, and I wouldn't suggest you follow it: if you want to be an Officer, join up as an Officer; if you want to be a Rating, join up as a Rating. I understand that people may not aspire to a Commission immediately on joining, however to join as a Rating solely with a view to becoming an OFficer further down the line is a bad idea.

    If you want to go to uni, go to uni - on it's own merits. Discount the RN from the equation, it is only a job. There are benefits and drawbacks to each kind of entry: my only bit of advice would be to join at the earliest opportunity for each scheme. Joining at 22/23 as a non-grad has significant drawbacks, as does joining at 24/25 as a Grad.
  20. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    It's absolutely correct that the only sure way of becomming an Officer is by joining as one, however it would be remiss to suggest that joining as a rating renders a commission unattainable as 25% of Naval Officers joined as ratings, rising to 30% of Engineering Officers & dropping to around 10% Corps Commission RM Officers.

    Difficult: yes, statistically less likely: yes, guaranteed:no, impossible: no.

    There is also the fact that if you join with a degree, you leave with a degree whether a rating or an officer.

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