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Officer Opportunities

Lt. Jones in front of a helicopter

For people graduating from college, leaving a civilian job or serving in another military service, we offer you the opportunity to get an officer's commission in the Coast Guard. From the get-go, you'll be in take-charge situations, where your decisions can make the difference between life and death. It's the kind of experience that no entry-level civilian job can match.


In the Coast Guard, we have five main missions: Maritime Security, Maritime Mobility, Maritime Safety, Protection of Natural Resources and National Defense. Within each mission, we offer officer commissions in a host of fields including engineering, law, intelligence and more. Depending on your skills and our needs, you can train to be an officer in anything from law to avionics electronics.


We offer Officer Programs in a variety of fields including:

  • law
  • environmental
  • aviation
  • engineering
  • command, control, communications
  • computer & information technologies
  • intelligence


*Medical Career Fields note: 
The Coast Guard maintains its own health care network utilizing Public Health Service (PHS) Officers to fill their medical, dental, pharmacy, environmental health, and PA positions.  All health care providers must first join the U.S. Public Health Service. The application occurs in two phases: complete the initial online forms at this website The secondary application is more detailed and includes a physical exam, credentials verification, letters of reference, background check, etc. The process typically takes around 180 days. Please contact the PHS Liaison, email

The Coast Guard also has its own physician assistants that are not attached to the PHS corps. If you’re interested in this program, go to more information regarding this specific program, please contact LCDR Bridget A. Metcalf,

As an officer in the Coast Guard, you'll get opportunities unmatched by any offered by an entry-level civilian job. For instance, as a Coast Guard aviator, you may find yourself taking charge during a life-saving search and rescue mission, or leading missions against drug smugglers or illegal aliens.

As an engineering officer, you could be overseeing the design, construction and maintenance of Coast Guard vessels, merchant vessels or shore facilities.

Or, prove to us that you have what it takes to become an environmental manager, and you may end up protecting the environment from corporate oil and chemical spills.

There's one thing you can definitely be sure of: because the Coast Guard is the smallest of all our nation's armed forces, once you're a commissioned officer, your leadership skills, experience and management abilities will be called upon often. 


All Chaplains serving the U.S. Coast Guard are Navy Chaplains. Navy Chaplains care for all of the sea services.

In general, the educational requirements include a bachelors degree, a Masters of Divinity Degree (three years postgraduate), and the endorsement from a recognized faith group. Once a person has received a Bachelors Degree and been accepted at seminary, they can qualify for the Chaplains Candidate Program and be commissioned. There are age requirements but waivers are available for certain faith groups and those with prior-military service.

For more information or to talk to a chaplain, you can call the Chaplain Corps Recruiter at 901-874-9216 or speak with the Navy Officer Programs Recruiter in your area.

If you are interested in becoming an enlisted Religious Program Specialist (RP) who works with chaplains, call 1-800-USA Navy or go to this website. A local Navy Recruiter can also provide information for those who are not already in the military.