Working with a prototype of a new atomic clock at the U.S. Naval Observatory. Providing hydrographic surveys of the ocean bottom. Observing weather conditions from airplanes, satellites or weather balloons. There are dynamic job opportunities for those interested in meteorology and oceanography in America’s Navy.
Meteorology & Oceanography Job Description
Aerographer’s Mates are the Navy's meteorological and oceanographic experts, trained in the science of meteorology and physical oceanography. Using instruments that monitor weather characteristics such as air pressure, temperature, humidity and wind speed and direction, you will distribute this data to aircraft, ships and shore-based commands.
No degree is required to work in this community; however, there are Officer opportunities available to those with a four-year degree.
Specific Job Responsibilities
Working in the oceanography and meteorology field, you’ll have the everyday responsibility of supplying important information needed to complete critical Navy missions. Helping guide ships, aircraft and troops with recommendations based on weather forecasts and ocean conditions. Relaying forecast updates and weather warnings to military and civilian authorities. Preparing ocean, sea and waterway charts and maps for anything from basic navigation to search-and-rescue efforts.
As an Aerographer’s Mate, you may be called upon to:
- Direct personnel who gather oceanographic and weather data
- Collect information about ocean currents for military operations or ice conditions in ocean shipping lanes
- Prepare up-to-date weather maps and oceanographic information
- Take readings of barometric pressure, temperature, humidity and sea conditions
- Operate radio equipment to receive information from satellites
- Operate and maintain electrical power generators
As a meteorologist or oceanographer in America’s Navy, you may find yourself in weather stations or operations centers where weather information can be collected, analyzed and plotted using computers. You could also be on aircraft or warships generating forecasts or advising a rescue team about the ocean tides and currents.
Training, Education & Advancement
The oceanography and meteorology job field in the Navy puts a heavy emphasis on research, education and specialized training. Training received in this field often translates to credit hours toward a college degree. You may also have the chance to continue your education with the help of the Navy through opportunities like the Navy College Program and Tuition Assistance.
Those pursuing an Officer position in this field attend Basic Oceanography Accession Training (BOAT) prior to their first duty station. Many Officers go on to attend the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, Calif., to complete a master’s degree in meteorology or physical oceanography. Beyond that, you could potentially earn a doctoral degree while being paid full-time as a Navy Officer.
No degree is required to work in the oceanography and meteorology field in the Navy. However, a four-year degree is required to pursue Officer opportunities.
After the Navy
Training in this field could prepare you for government agency and private sector careers, commercial airlines, and radio and TV stations. The skills you will acquire as an oceanographer or meteorologist could prepare you to work for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration or the U.S. Weather Service, or many other careers in the military and civilian worlds.
Consider Your Service Options
There are different ways that you can commit to serve in America's Navy. Besides full-time opportunities in Active Duty, part-time Reserve positions are also available in this career area.