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Job Announcement



The NNSY Apprentice program is a four-year training program which is designed to attract students to the federal public service. Students are taken through a challenging training program combining academics, trade theory and on-the-job experience to become skilled journeymen.

The apprentice program provides students with academic training which results in a "Technician Career Studies Certificate". Participants take college level courses, currently these are taught by Tidewater Community College (TCC) at the Portsmouth Campus. Compressed sessions will consist of two, nine week sessions. Students will be required to provide their own transportation while taking classes at the TCC Portsmouth Campus. The apprentice earns a competitive wage while advancing to the journeymen level following a planned progressive training program. All academic tuition and book cost are paid by NNSY; provided the student receives a grade of "C" or better in the courses of work pursued. Apprentices are employed at the pay rate of WT-1 (as of July 2018 this ranged from $14.67 to $16.17 per hour) and receive promotions upon successful completion of program requirements. Upon graduation, apprentices are converted to the journeymen level of their trade.

Other benefits include: sick leave, annual leave, federal holidays, health insurance, life insurance, and a retirement plan.

All perspective candidates must: 

  • Be a United States citizen
  • Have graduated with a High School diploma or GED equivalent
  • Meet minimum requirements on TCC placement test 
  • Be able to obtain and maintain a security clearance
  • Pass medical requirements

For more information, you may contact us via phone 757-396-4777, 757-396-4355 or email us at FLTHRO_NNSY@NAVY.MIL

Frequently Asked Questions
Click on a question to view its answer.


Q: What trades are offered for the apprentice program?
Students are selected for various blue-collar trades listed below:                                                    

: Fabricates, assembles, and installs repairs, and test boilers and boiler components. Work performed will be both in the shop and aboard ships from blueprints, sketches, specifications, layout templates and process instructions.

Electrician: Fabricates, installs, modifies, and repairs shipboard electrical systems, controls, instrumentation and rewind motors.                                                    

Electronics Mechanic: Installs, modifies, fabricates and repairs electrical/electronic systems, controls and instrumentation.  Uses blueprints, technical manuals and test procedures in accordance with specified guidelines.  Works on complex systems such navigation systems, fire control systems, radar and sonar equipment and satellite communications systems.

Fabric Worker: Fabricate, repair, and install fabric articles such as awnings, sails, boat canopies, weather and protective cloths, fenders, bumpers, various types of covers, and other ship and boat materials.

Heavy Mobile Equipment Mechanic: Determines cause of mechanical operation problem, trace and locate defects, and make repairs to diesel, gasoline, and other types of internal combustion engines; automatic and non-automatic transmissions; heavy duty drive line systems; and hydraulic utility systems and controls.

Insulator:  Work involves insulating surfaces of pipes, ducts, valves, fittings, flanges, boilers, tanks, turbines, evaporators, refrigerating units, and similar structures.

Machinist:  Manufacture and repair parts and items of equipment which require the use of various types of standard and special machine tools and their attachments to machine metals, metal alloys, and other materials.

Marine Machinery Mechanic: Dismantle, repair, relocate, modify, maintain, align, overhaul and install a wide variety of marine machinery, equipment and systems such as propulsion machinery, lifeboat davits, anchor handling gear, and missile tube equipment located aboard submarines, ships and other floating craft.

Metals Inspector: Conducting nondestructive testing in the fields of visual, eddy current, liquid penetrant, magnetic particle, radiography, and ultrasonic inspections, to ensure a quality products.

Painter: Performs various types of preparations and applications to ships' surfaces and equipment; apply paint and other protective coatings. This work is accomplished using solvents, acids, detergents, power and hand tools and electronic controlled automatic plate blasting equipment.

Pipefitter:  Installs, maintains, and fabricates various piping systems and equipment necessary to carry out the overhaul and repair of naval vessels and to support shipboard hotel services and engineering systems. The piping systems include water (salt and fresh), steam (high and low pressure), compressed air, fuel, and sanitation systems.

Rigger: Use chainfalls, blocks and tackles, winches, cranes, and other mechanical devices to safely move items, ranging from a few pounds to those weighing several hundred tons, usually from or to areas within ships or submarines.

Sheet Metal Mechanic: Constructs and installs metal products to include ventilation, furniture (desks, tables, bunks, lockers, cabinets, bins, etc.), bulkheads, ladders, handrails, and equipment foundations, Interprets blueprints, develops patters, and use computer programs designed to develop sketches.

Shipfitter:  Develops, lays out, bolts, assembles and erects ferrous, nonferrous metals and plastic plate.  Manufactures and installs interior and exterior items on vessels such as bulwarks, catapult structures, doors, foundations, hatches, railings and tanks.  Prepares surfaces for welding, burning or riveting.

Shipwright: Builds and lays out keel and bilge blocks as supporting cradles for dry-docking submarines and surface ships. Installs and repairs wood bulkheads, doors, sash, paneling, ladders, super-structure decks and gratings, wooden decks and panels of wood substitutes.

Welder: Involves welding metals and alloys. Uses Electric, gas, and other welding processes such as electron Beam welding, and the skill to apply these processes in manufacturing, repairing, modifying, rebuilding, and assembling various types of metal and alloy parts, equipment, systems and structures such as buildings, aircraft and ships.

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Q: How do I apply for Norfolk Naval Shipyard’s Apprenticeship Program?
  • Complete admissions application for Tidewater Community College (TCC), either online or at college. 
  • Take college Placement Test at any TCC campus.

            NOTE: All apprenticeship applicants must self-identify their status to Community College testing center staff and complete the Placement Test (VPT). 
            Applicants must apply online through USAJOBS.  Locate the announcement by using the "Search for Jobs" feature on the USAJOBS website:

    • On the USAJOBS homepage, sign in or create password if one has not been created
    • Build/create your resume then in the “Keyword” block type "Apprentice", and in the “Location” block, type “Portsmouth, VA”
    • Open announcement by clicking on Apprentice vacancy
    • Click "apply online" button
    • On this page select your resume then click "apply for this position now"
    • You will be taken to the Application Manager program. Create a password, if one has not been created.
    • Complete the required assessment questionnaire.
    • Upload and submit your printed copy of your TCC Placement Test results, and if applicable all military documents; All DD-214's, and  if applicable SF-15 Form and VA Letter.
    • Upon completion of your application package, you will receive a confirmation message with your vacancy ID number.

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Q: How do I apply for admission to Tidewater Community College?
Visit any Tidewater Community campus Admissions Office for assistance or apply online at
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Q:  How can I determine if I submitted my resume correctly?
Log into Application Manager, click on the job announcement for which you applied and it will state “completed”. 
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Q:  What if I forgot my USAJOBS or Application Manager username and/or password?
On the login screen there is a link “forgot user name or password”. Click on the link and it will prompt you to submit your email address. Follow the directions and you will be able to obtain your username and/or password.

NOTE:  The Human Resources Office (HRO) does not have access to your account; therefore, it is imperative that you keep this information for future use. 
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Q:  Who needs to take the college placement test?
Each individual applying for NNSY’s Apprentice Program must take the TCC Placement Test.

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Q:  Where can I get information on taking the TCC Placement Test?
Log into on the TCC website: http://www.tcc.edu/admission/placement-testing or call any of the TCC campuses at: Chesapeake 757-822-5131; Norfolk 757-822-1310; Portsmouth 757-822-2194; Virginia Beach 757-822-7390 or email at porttestctr@tcc.edu. The TCC website provides information about the testing center locations, testing schedule, practice questions, links to resources for studying Math/English, et cetera. Since the placement tests can only be retaken once within a 12 month period, we recommend completing the practice tests prior to taking the actual placement test. You also may want to consider arriving at the testing center closer to opening, rather than closing time, as the English and Math tests can take up to 2-4 hours each to complete. For the same reason, many choose to take the tests on separate days. As of December 20, 2014 there is no testing fee required.
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Q:  I have not attended TCC for several years; do I have to reapply for admissions?
If you have not been enrolled in classes at TCC for more than three years, yes you will need to reapply. Visit any campus Admissions Office for assistance or reapply online at https://www.apply.vccs.edu/applications/VCCS/logon

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Q:  I attended another college before coming to TCC.  Will my credits transfer?
Have an Official Copy of your previous college/university transcript sent to Tidewater Community College, Central Records Office, P.O. Box 9000, Norfolk, VA 23509-9000 You will also need to complete TCC's Evaluation of Previous Educational Experiences Form and submit it electronically to the Central Records Office.

This WILL NOT EXEMPT YOU from taking the placement test or the courses required by the apprentice program.

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Q:  I have a degree; do I still need to take the placement test?
Yes, the placement test determines eligibility for an interview.
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Q:  Can I use my SAT scores in lieu of the placement test?
No, even though TCC honors these scholastic tests as part of their normal admissions process, SAT scores will not be used in lieu of the placement test. 
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Q:  Where else can I get more information about the Apprentice Program?
Prior to the Announcement opening, NNSY will begin conducting information sessions at TCC, Portsmouth Campus. The schedule will be available at http://www.tcc.edu/about-tcc/apprenticeship-institute/nnsy

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