New NAFC Route to Careers at Sea

A new course being launched by the NAFC Marine Centre UHI in January is aimed at students interested in pursuing a career at sea.

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Chartwork is just one of the topics covered in the new course.

The new Cadet Programme Access course is aimed at students who are interested in joining the centre’s popular Merchant Navy Officer Cadet programme to train as deck or engineer officers, or in pursuing other maritime careers.

Cadet programme leader Laura Burden explained that, “We know that some students who want to pursue a career at sea may not have obtained as many National 5s as they hoped, or may not want to stay on for another year at school. Others are interested in a career at sea but may not feel ready to embark on the full cadet programme. This new course provides an opportunity for them to gain qualifications and experience to launch their careers at sea, either through the cadet programme or in other sectors of the maritime industry.”

The 6-month course will offer classroom and practical training in a wide range of subjects relevant to maritime careers including seamanship, navigation, vessel construction, marine engineering, electrical maintenance, and mathematics. Students who successfully finish the course will receive a National Progression Award (NPA) in Maritime Studies and several National Certificate (NC) modules and will be eligible to apply for entry to the cadet programme.

Students who wish to do so can still apply for direct entry to NAFC’s Merchant Navy Officer Cadet Programme which next starts in September 2021. The three-year cadet programme trains deck and engineer officers for the merchant navy through a mix of time spent studying at NAFC and time working at sea as a trainee on board ships and has been running now for 17 years at NAFC.

Further Information

Full details of the new course are available at:

For further information or inquiries, please contact Laura Burden (