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How is it being an NFO?

nacky5010

New Member
Hello. I am 30 and interested in becoming a Naval Flight Officer. What is a typical day like and is it a good career choice? Is there anything to watch out for? The recruiter told me that I would not be flying the plane, but someone on this forum said that NFOs do some flying during training. How is flight school-is it very difficult? What do people do in the civilian world after being an NFO? Recruiter said Lockheed Martin and Boeing, but is that likely? I also saw somewhere that this field does not translate well into the civilian sector and that people wind up doing things that are totally unrelated. I’m trying to determine if I should pursue this once-in-a- lifetime opportunity or do something else with my MS in Industrial Engineering.
 

cfam

A pilot is a pilot. An NFO is something else.
None
Super Moderator
Contributor
I would recommend doing a little more digging around the forums first, and then trying to narrow down your questions.

There are threads discussing the basics of what NFOs do in each community. NFO responsibilities can vary from weapons system setup/employment to providing control for other aircraft, to sub-hunting, to signal detection and jamming, etc.

A typical day in the life will vary depending on your aircraft, but assume it will be some mixture of flying and doing administrative work for your “ground job,” e.g. running a division of aircraft maintenance personnel.

NFOs do not fly the plane, outside of a few familiarization flights during primary flight training.

NFOs have largely the same career opportunities in the Navy as pilots. Want to command a squadron? Want to be the commanding officer of an aircraft carrier? NFOs are eligible for those jobs. As far as what awaits you outside the Navy: what do you want to do? Sure, the direct transition to airline pilot isn’t necessarily there for you (unless you build hours and ratings in your spare time on your own dime) but there’s nothing stopping you from pursuing any other career field you’d want.

You said it yourself, it’s “a once in a lifetime opportunity.” I wouldn’t trade my career so far for anything.
 

nacky5010

New Member
I would recommend doing a little more digging around the forums first, and then trying to narrow down your questions.

There are threads discussing the basics of what NFOs do in each community. NFO responsibilities can vary from weapons system setup/employment to providing control for other aircraft, to sub-hunting, to signal detection and jamming, etc.

A typical day in the life will vary depending on your aircraft, but assume it will be some mixture of flying and doing administrative work for your “ground job,” e.g. running a division of aircraft maintenance personnel.

NFOs do not fly the plane, outside of a few familiarization flights during primary flight training.

NFOs have largely the same career opportunities in the Navy as pilots. Want to command a squadron? Want to be the commanding officer of an aircraft carrier? NFOs are eligible for those jobs. As far as what awaits you outside the Navy: what do you want to do? Sure, the direct transition to airline pilot isn’t necessarily there for you (unless you build hours and ratings in your spare time on your own dime) but there’s nothing stopping you from pursuing any other career field you’d want.

You said it yourself, it’s “a once in a lifetime opportunity.” I wouldn’t trade my career so far for anything.
Thanks. I will search the forums more. I didn’t quite find what I was looking for the first time around
 

cfam

A pilot is a pilot. An NFO is something else.
None
Super Moderator
Contributor
Thanks. I will search the forums more. I didn’t quite find what I was looking for the first time around
No problem. Feel free to fire away with more specific questions as they come up, just realize that it’s tough to answer the really open ended ones, because it honestly depends so much on the particular aircraft/community.
 
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