1.  When do I apply for my 3rd Mate/ Assistant Engineer License?

Typically in September of your senior year. All license track cadets must complete a License Program Completion Worksheet to determine readiness to apply. This includes completion/intent to complete all academic coursework, and fulfillment of all watchstanding and seatime requirements. The USCG requires that a cadet must be within 6 months of completing all program requirements in order to apply for a 3rd Mate/A.E. credential and in their final term of enrollment to sit for their licensing exams. 

2.  How can I check on my current watchstanding status?

Cadets should contact the Office of the Commandant to verify current Watchstanding totals. Per the Student Handbook, cadets are required to complete a minimum of forty-eight (48) 4 hour watches during the course of their four year program.

3.  How can I check on my current seatime status?

Cadets should contact  Ms. Jessica Sotuyo, Commercial Shipping Coordinator, with questions and concerns pertaining to commercial billeting and their accrued commercial sea time total. Cadets should contact Ms. Jessica Fowler in the Marine Programs Office, with questions and concerns pertaining to their sea time aboard the T.S. Golden Bear.

4.  What if I have still have outstanding seatime or watchstanding to complete at the time of my application?

Cadets must be able to reasonably expect to complete all sea service and watchstanding requirements, by the end of the term in which they are testing, in order to submit a 3rd Mate/Assistant Engineer MMC application. Please contact your Company Commandant to verify your current watchstanding totals.

5.  How do I apply to take the USCG licensing exams? 

All 1C Engine and Deck students applying to test must complete their Third Assistant Engineer License Application or Third Mate License Application and be "Approved to Test". Please refer to the 3rd Mate and 3rd Assistant Engineer Application Packet provided during the fall application cycle for detailed information on the application process.

6.  What forms of personal identification are required to apply for a 3rd A.E/Mates credential? 

  • Valid Driver's License
  • TWIC valid through date of anticipated graduation
  • US Passport
  • Certificate of Naturalization, if applicable
  • I-551 Permanent Resident Alien (Green) Card, if applicable

7.  Do I have to be a US citizen to apply for my 3rd's credential?

No, US citizenship is not required at the time of your application or testing, however, you must be a U.S. citizen to receive your license.  Citizenship status at the time of program completion is the determining factor for issuance of 3rds credentials.  Please refer to US Citizenship Information for more information on citizenship questions. 

8.  Do I have to be a US citizen to receive my 3rds credential?

Yes, you must be a US citizen to receive your license.  Citizenship status at the time of program completion is the determining factor for issuance of 3rds credentials.  Please refer to US Citizenship Information for more information on citizenship questions.

9.  What is the fee to apply for a 3rd Mate / A.E. credential? 

$255.00 (as of 9/15/23)

10.  How do I pay for the USCG License Application Exam?  

All credentialing fees are paid on the Pay.Gov website.   

11.  What documents are required to submit with my application?

Links and instructions for all forms can be found in the 3rd Mate and 3rd Assistant Engineer Application Packet.

  1. Statements of Understanding form
  2. MMC Application Third Party Authorization form
  3. MMC Medical Certificate Third Party Authorization form
  4. CG-719B Merchant Mariner Credential Application 
  5. CG-719C Conviction Disclosure Statement (if any infractions since entry-level application) 
  6. CG-719K Medical Certification Application/Physical form 
  7. Photocopy of TWIC card
  8. Valid Cal Maritime Random Drug Testing Program participant letter (provided by Licensing office) or CG-719P Drug Testing form and lab results (if not currently enrolled).
  9. Pay.Gov receipt of $ 255.00

Please note that non-U.S. citizens will require additional documentation with their application, please refer to the 3rd Mate & 3rd Assistant Engineer Application Packet for details.

12.  When are licensing exams administered?

The USCG will not allow cadets to apply to test until entering their final academic term. All cadets are required to run an Academic Requirements Report from PeopleSoft and complete a License Program Completion Worksheet in the spring of their junior year, to determine readiness to sit for their exams. Cadets are typically eligible to sit for their USCG 3rd Mate/A.E exams, given on campus in January of their senior year. Cadets completing their senior cruise in the summer AFTER their senior year must test after completion of their senior cruise. A summer testing session may offered on campus, typically in mid-July. Testing outside of these timeframes is coordinated and scheduled by the Licensing Office. Please refer to the License Exam Policy Sheet  for more information on licensing exams.

13. What STCW tables will be met upon successful completion of my license track program?

Please refer to 3rd Mate-MMC Sample or 3rd Assistant Engineer Standard Issues for a list of all STCW tables contained within the Cadet 310 program. 

14.  What will typically appear on my credential for National Licensure?

Refer to 3rd Assistant Engineer sample or 3rd Mate sample for MMC images.

15.  What STCW endorsements will typically appear on my credential? 

Refer to 3rd Assistant Engineer sample or 3rd Mate sample for MMC images.

16.  What will I receive when I complete all of my program requirements? 

When you have completed all program requirements and passed the licensing exams, you will be issued your officer's credential and an updated medical certificate, along with a Cal Maritime program certificate, which verifies all endorsements included on your MMC. All certificates are valid on the date of program completion, which is typically the date of Commencement. Please note that individual certifications are not issued. You should provide a copy of your Cal Maritime program certificate whenever employers or the NMC require verification of your certifications.

17.  Can I receive my credential and program certificates if I pass my licensing exams but have not completed all of my degree requirements?

No. Your 3rds credential and all program related certificates are linked to your diploma, and cannot be processed without completion of your cadet training program, which includes completion of all required academic coursework, seatime and watchstanding. No Degree = No License.

18.  Can I receive my diploma without passing my licensing exams?

No. 46 US CFR requires, as a condition for graduation, that each individual who is a citizen of the United States and is attending the academy in a merchant mariner officer preparation program pass the examination required for the issuance of the license under section 7101 of  the title.  No License = No Degree.

19.  What is the time frame to receive my license once I have completed my academic requirements, successfully passed the USCG exams and completed licensing requirements? 

Your license and all earned program certificates will be provided to you at Commencement. If program completion falls outside of the traditional timeline, there is typically a 3-4 week processing period for receipt of your credential and program certificates.

20. Can I print a copy of my credential?

Yes. Once your credential has been processed, visit the HomePort website to view and print a certificate copy of your credential endorsements that is suitable for framing.

21. When will I receive my diploma?

Diplomas will be mailed to the mailing address of record approximately 6-8 weeks after the end of the semester of academic completion.  The diploma is not included in your credential packet. Please review/update your home mailing address on PeopleSoft and email registrar@csum.edu if you have additional questions or concerns regarding issuance of your diploma.