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Navy SeamanE-3 SN (Previous)
Seaman

Navy Petty Officer Third Class

E-4 Petty Officer, U.S. Navy
(Next) E-5 PO2Navy Petty Officer Second Class
Petty Officer Second Class
Navy Petty Officer Third Class
Navy Petty Officer Third Class
Navy E-4 Petty Officer Third Class

Class Petty Officer
Abbr. PO3
Title Petty Officer (last name)
Paygrade E-4 (DoD Paygrade)
OR-4 (NATO Code)
Salary $1916.10/mo

What is a Petty Officer Third Class?

Petty Officer Third Class is the first of the Navy's Petty Officer grades, the Navy's variation of non-commissioned officers. It is above Seaman and below Petty Officer Second Class. A Petty Officer Third Class serves both as a leader and as a technical expert, and all Petty Officers have a specified rating, or job. The exact title with which a petty officer is addressed depends on their specialty - a Petty Officer Third Class serving as a Machinist's Mate, for example, would have the full title of Machinist's Mate Third Class.

To receive a promotion from Seaman to Petty Officer Third Class, sailors must complete a specialty test for their particular rating and apply for advancement every six months. Only a certain number of Petty Officer Third Class billets are available to be filled every year, and competition for promotion is extremely fierce among qualified seamen.

Petty Officer Third Class is the 4th rank in the United States Navy, ranking above Seaman and directly below Petty Officer Second Class. A petty officer third class is a Petty Officer at DoD paygrade E-4, with a starting monthly pay of $1916.10.

How do you become a Petty Officer Third Class?

A Petty Officer Third Class is most often promoted from Seaman (SN), although promotion from lower paygrades may occur with sufficient display of leadership and experience.

What is the proper way to address a Petty Officer Third Class?

The correct way to address a Petty Officer Third Class named Mr. Gutierrez is "Petty Officer Gutierrez", or written as PO3 Gutierrez. In addition to their rank, all Navy petty officers have a rating (job) such as Fire Controlman. This job is included in their full rank title. In formal situations, a Petty Officer Third Class should always be addressed by their full rank.

How much does a Petty Officer Third Class earn?

Basic pay for an entry-level Petty Officer Third Class with no years of experience is $1,916.10 per month. A Petty Officer Third Class receives an automatic raise to their basic pay every one to two years.

Basic pay is only a small percentage of a Petty Officer Third Class' final compensation package. In addition to a monthly basic pay salary, a Navy Petty Officer Third Class may be eligible for multiple types of allowances and bonus pay including housing allowance, education allowance, food allowance, retirement benefits, and more.

For full details on the Navy's Petty Officer Third Class compensation and retirement plan, visit the 2014 Navy Petty Officer Third Class Pay Chart. A full table of the Navy's current paygrades are available at the Navy Pay Chart.

Equivalent Ranks

Air Force Senior Airman - Equivalent to Petty Officer Third Class
Air Force
Senior Airman
Army Specialist - Equivalent to Petty Officer Third Class
Army
Specialist
Coast Guard Petty Officer Third Class - Equivalent to Petty Officer Third Class
Coast Guard
Petty Officer Third Class
Marine Corps Corporal - Equivalent to Petty Officer Third Class
Marine Corps
Corporal
Navy Petty Officer Third Class - Equivalent to Petty Officer Third Class
Navy
Petty Officer Third Class