Coast Guard Officer

Public Sector
Last Updated:
July 19, 2023

Job Description Overview

A Coast Guard Officer job description involves serving the public by ensuring safety and security on the water. As a Coast Guard Officer, you are a highly trained professional responsible for enforcing maritime laws, responding to emergencies, and conducting search and rescue operations. Your main objective is to protect the nation's coasts, waterways, and people from harm. This requires you to have advanced expertise in navigation, communication, and vessel handling. You must also possess strong leadership and teamwork skills to coordinate with other government agencies during emergency situations. A typical day in this job includes planning missions, performing inspections, patrolling waterways, and maintaining equipment. Coast Guard Officers work in a demanding and challenging environment that requires discipline, physical fitness, and mental agility. If you are looking for a rewarding career in the Public Sector industry, becoming a Coast Guard Officer may be the perfect fit for you.

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Job Duties and Responsibilities

  • Ensure the safety and security of maritime activity in assigned areas of responsibility
  • Manage and supervise personnel in the execution of their duties
  • Plan and participate in search and rescue missions for distressed vessels and people in peril
  • Enforce federal laws and regulations, including those related to marine environmental protection
  • Conduct inspections of vessels and facilities to ensure compliance with safety and security standards
  • Develop and implement strategies to combat smuggling and other illegal activities
  • Coordinate with other agencies, including the Navy, Customs and Border Protection, and local law enforcement, to promote maritime security and interagency cooperation
  • Participate in community outreach and education programs to raise awareness of maritime safety and security issues

Experience and Education Requirements

If you want to be a Coast Guard Officer in the Public Sector industry, there are a few things you should know. First, you'll need some education. Most officers have at least a bachelor's degree, but there are some who have only completed high school or have a GED. It's also important to have some experience. Many officers start as enlisted members and work their way up through the ranks. Other experience, like volunteering or working in the maritime industry, can also be helpful. Finally, all officers must complete Officer Candidate School (OCS) to become a commissioned officer, where they will receive training on leadership, navigation, and other important topics.

Salary Range

Coast Guard Officer salary range in the United States is expected to fall between $58,000 to $108,000. According to Glassdoor, the national average salary for a Coast Guard Officer is $77,000 per year. PayScale reports that the starting salary for a Coast Guard Officer is around $41,000 and can increase up to $85,000 with experience. 

In Canada, a Coast Guard Officer can expect to earn an average salary of CA$70,000 per year according to Neuvoo. The salary range varies based on experience and location, with salaries ranging from CA$46,000 to CA$106,000. 

In summary, the salary range for Coast Guard Officers varies based on factors such as experience, location, and rank. It is a highly respected and rewarding career in the public sector. 


  • Glassdoor:,27.htm
  • PayScale:
  • Neuvoo:

Career Outlook

The career outlook for Coast Guard Officers in the Public Sector industry appears to be stable in the next five years. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment for all protective service occupations, which includes Coast Guard Officers, is projected to grow by 3% from 2019 to 2029. This growth is attributed to the continuation of security concerns and a need for public safety. In addition, the Coast Guard Officer occupation is considered vital to national security, which ensures that there will always be a need for qualified individuals in this career. So if you have a passion for serving your country and protecting your fellow citizens, a career as a Coast Guard Officer might be right for you.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: What is a Coast Guard Officer and what do they do in the Public Sector industry?

A: Coast Guard Officers are responsible for managing, directing, and conducting all Coast Guard activities related to the safety and security of United States coastal waters, ports, and waterways.

Q: What is the educational requirement to become a Coast Guard Officer?

A: The minimum requirement to become a Coast Guard Officer is a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university.

Q: What is the pay scale for Coast Guard Officers?

A: Pay scales for Coast Guard Officers vary depending on rank, years of service, and job responsibilities. Starting salaries for officers can range from $3,580 to $6,559 per month.

Q: What are the main duties of a Coast Guard Officer?

A: The main duties of a Coast Guard Officer include conducting search and rescue operations, enforcing maritime laws and regulations, supervising crews and staff, inspecting vessels, and conducting environmental response operations.

Q: How long does it take to become a Coast Guard Officer?

A: Becoming a Coast Guard Officer can take about 4-5 years depending on educational requirements, training programs, and career goals.

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