The NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps is the uniformed component of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The service consists of approximately 321 commissioned officers. A typical officer's career is spent in a broad variety of assignments that rotate between sea duty and shore stations. Assignments are not necessarily related to an officer’s academic field, but each will contribute to the officer’s development as a technically competent leader. NOAA Corps officers operate ships, fly aircraft, lead mobile field parties, conduct diving operations, manage research projects, and serve in staff positions throughout NOAA. If you are interested in a career that includes service, science, and adventure, you will find a unique opportunity in the NOAA Corps.
Applicants must be a U.S. Citizen and hold a baccalaureate degree, preferably in a major course of study related to NOAA’s scientific or technical activities. Course work must include at least 48 semester (72 quarter) hours in science, math, or engineering subjects pertaining to NOAA's missions. Applicants must also be in excellent health, have normal color vision and uncorrected visual acuity no worse than 20/400 in each eye, correctable to 20/20.
Selected candidates are commissioned as Ensigns and after successful completion of the 5 month long Basic Officer Training Class (BOTC), are assigned to a NOAA survey or research ship for up to 3 years. There is a 15 month obligatory service period following completion of BOTC.