Written by Sam Ansell, STEM Manager

In our last STEM news update we shared that some of our STEM Ambassadors were working on producing short videos to demonstrate what they do for a job and what a typical day looks like.

Our first video is now available to watch on our YouTube channel and features Lieutenant Francesca Allen. Francesca is a Naval Officer and weather forecaster based at RNAS Culdrose. In the video, she highlights the work she does to assess the impact of the physical environment on Naval operations. You also get a glimpse of the work that goes on at the base.

She often speaks to local primary school children about her work especially when they are looking at the topic of weather!

Francesca has answered some questions to inform others about how they can go down a similar career path:

1. Did you Know?

There are approximately 4000 women in the Royal Navy, enough to man 16 destroyers if we were all at sea at once! There are 40,000 personnel in the Royal Navy, so the workforce is only 10% women.

2. Entry Routes

You need to be aged 16 or over to join the Royal Navy. If you’re under the age of 18, you will need the consent of a parent or guardian.

You can join the Navy as an Officer or as a Rating.

You can join after year 11 and choose to do on the job training or an apprenticeship. The majority of Apprenticeships lead to rating roles. You can also join after A levels and depending on UCAS points may be able to join as an officer. Graduates can also apply for an Officer role.

If you’re too young to apply, you can join the Sea Cadets. This is a great way to develop your leadership and teamwork skills, while gaining a valuable insight into life in the Royal Navy. You can find out more here

3. Qualifications needed

To join as a rating you don’t necessarily need any qualifications. For certain Officer roles you will need to have specific vocational degrees, however the minimum academic standard for entry as a Royal Navy Officer is 5 GCSEs A-C (9-4) which must include English language and mathematics at grade B/6 or above, and 72 UCAS points gained from A Levels or accepted equivalents.

4. Key skills and qualities needed

The skills needed for the role of weather forecaster include being interested in science and the environment, an analytical mind and good communication skills.

5. Five reasons why

  • Good career progression/ promotion
  • Varied work, in terms of no day is ever the same
  • Working all over the world, travel
  • Good pay/ job security
  • Working with like-minded people

6. Useful links for further information




We are looking to add more videos to our YouTube channel, to act as a resource for schools and to support young people’s understanding of STEM related job roles. If you work in a STEM role and would be able to create a short video showing your ‘day in the life’ we would love to hear from you! Contact the team at ambassadors@cswgroup.co.uk