UNITED STATES NAVY

Seaman Recruit is the lowest enlisted rank in the U.S. Navy and U.S. Coast Guard, just below Seaman Apprentice; this rank was formerly known as Seaman Third Class. Barring cases of demotion, seaman recruits are almost exclusively found in basic training, as advancement to Seaman Apprentice is mostly automatic, shortly after completion of basic training. Two separate pay grades exist within this rank (and the corresponding ranks in the other branches of the American military structure) - one for those with service of less than four months, with a higher pay scale for those in service for more than four months, even if they have not yet advanced to Seaman Apprentice.

Seaman recruits do not bear any uniform rank insignia (although at one time they did, in the form of one diagonal stripe, which the coast guard still uses for their E-1s), which would normally be worn on the left sleeve.

The actual title for an E-1 in the U.S. Navy varies based on the community to which the sailor belongs.

  • Those in the general deck and administrative community are Seamen Recruits.
  • Hospital Corpsmen are Hospital Recruits. They are the only rate in this community.
  • Dental Techs are called Dental Recrutis. They are the only rate in thie community.
  • Firemen Recruites are those in the engineering and hull community.
  • Those in the aviation community are called Airmen Recruits.
  • Seabees are called Constructionmen Recruits.


Sailors who have completed the requirements to be assigned a rating and have been accepted by the Bureau of Naval Personel as holding that rating (a process called "striking") are called Designated Strikers, and are called by their full rate and rating in formal communications (ie, Machinist's Mate Fireman Recruit, as opposed to simply Fireman Recruit), though the rating is often left off in informal communication. Those who have not officially been assigned to a rating are officially referred to as "Undesignated" or "Non-rates."