This article provides an overview of the training process for Irish Naval Service recruits wishing to join the Irish Defence Forces (IDF).
2.0 Purpose of Recruit Training
The purpose of the Recruit Training Syllabus is to produce a physically fit, disciplined and motivated Two Star sailor (Ordinary Seaman) with basic military skills.
Recruit training (aka boot camp, basic training or Phase 1 initial training) is twenty weeks in duration.
It is followed by Three Star training and at a later stage by Trained Soldier Specialist Training courses.
3.0 Outline of Basic Training
Officer Cadet training is divided into three distinct phases of training followed by continuation training:
- Phase 1: Induction lasting two weeks.
- Phase 2: Core Training Period lasting ten weeks.
- Phase 3: Final Training Period lasting two weeks.
- Continuation Training lasting six weeks.
3.1 Phase 1: Induction
Phase 1 is two weeks in duration and training includes:
- An orientation package;
- Medical intake processing;
- Adventure training;
- Information/motivational instruction;
- Personnel/logistical administration;
- Health and safety education and training; and
- Physical training.
Training takes the form of both lecture and practical demonstrations.
3.2 Phase 2: Core Training Period
Phase 2 is ten weeks in duration and training includes:
- Sea Week: Recruits are exposed to life on board a ship.
- First aid responder.
- Hygiene and sanitation.
- Health and safety.
- General purpose machine gun (GPMG).
- Guard mounting and sentinel drill.
- Examinations, including annual personal weapons test and fitness test.
3.3 Phase 3: Final Training Period
Phase 3 is two weeks in duration and is general professional naval training including:
- General seamanship.
- Ceremonial demonstration.
- Passing out parade.
4.0 Continuation Training
Continuation training, the Naval Service three star training, commences on completion of recruit training and is six weeks in duration.
This training includes:
- Fire-fighting and damage control (FFDC).
- H&K pistol.
- Marine interdiction operations (MIO).
- Ship protection operations (SPO).
- Quartermaster training.
- RHIB Bowman.
On completion of this training the individual will progress from Ordinary Seaman to Able Seaman and qualify ratings to take up a posting at sea.
4.0 Assignment to First Ship
Recruits who successfully complete the basic training programme receive their ship assignment in the last week of the Recruit course.
5.0 Recruitment Statistics
In 2016, the Naval Service recruited (or inducted) “89” recruits from a total applicant pool of “4,807”, “79” men and “10” women (DOD, 2016, p.39).
DOD (Department of Defence). (2016) Department of Defence and Defence Forces Annual Report 2016. Available from World Wide Web: http://www.military.ie/fileadmin/user_upload/images/Info_Centre/documents/Annual_Reports/Annual_Report_2016__English_.pdf. [Accessed: 08 January, 2019].