In its ongoing effort to enhance its military capabilities, the Chinese navy has announced its intention to recruit highly educated graduate students to operate shipborne aircraft. To facilitate this, the navy is expanding its search by raising the age limit for potential candidates.
China has been actively upgrading its military hardware, including both warships and warplanes. Alongside these advancements, the Chinese military is focusing on improving the qualifications and capabilities of its personnel. Historically, the military has been a preferred career path for individuals with less formal education.
In an advertisement posted on the social media platform WeChat, the People’s Liberation Army Navy stated its interest in recruiting graduate students who hold master’s degrees in science and engineering. Applicants should also be under the age of 26. This initiative aims to select candidates who can pilot aircraft from China’s growing fleet of aircraft carriers.
Notably, just last year, the Chinese navy expanded its eligibility criteria to include undergraduates aged 24 or below. Prior to that, the navy only considered high school graduates aged below 20.
The People’s Liberation Army Navy emphasized the increasing importance of high-quality military talent, given the expanding mission and tasks of the navy. They noted that the strategic shift of the navy is accelerating.
Candidates must meet specific requirements, including being male with a clean “political history” and no legal or disciplinary history.
The training process for selected candidates will include three to four years of aviation theory studies and practical flight training. Successful candidates will receive free medical care for themselves and their immediate family, as well as government-provided housing.
China is currently in the final stages of preparing its third aircraft carrier, the Fujian, for sea trials. This marks a significant step toward operational service for the domestically produced warship. China has set ambitious goals to modernize its military forces by 2035, reflecting its commitment to enhancing its defense capabilities on a global scale.