Now that we’ve gone through the basics of creating a ship for the crew and families, let’s talk about something more to do with ship life than the ship itself and that is promotion. In modern naval ships promotion comes by a variety of things to include semiannual performance evaluations from the boss on things like work done, teamwork, leadership, and classes done. One of the easiest ways to stand out from the other people across the navy is to have finished college or in-job classes in the last quarter. Education is considered an effective way to judge ambition and the ability to handle responsibility, even though many people focus more on their education than their actual job.
What you should really consider before planning your ship and story further is how your people will get promoted and what jobs or titles do they want to get promoted to? What are your officer ranks? What are your enlisted ranks? Do you have both on ship or just one system? If you have both, what is the distinction? In the modern military the basic distinction is that officers have a college degree or filled out papers as an enlisted and was chosen to be an officer. Many enlisted people also have degrees but they got them while enlisted or chose to be enlisted instead of officer.
Something else to think about while creating your fictional space ship is how your crew were trained. Were they forced to go through a special school to be allowed too work in the job they want or were they trained through working their way from newbie to boss in their chosen job? If they were trained at a school, where was it?
Some examples on how people could be trained would be the Star Trek shows where everyone is trained at the massive Academy above Earth or the modern military which trains people all over the states depending on what their chosen rating is. Training is often a fond memory of the person, more for the carefree atmosphere of students than for the actual classes. How many times have you heard people recounting their college experiences? Such stories can create instant bonds or cause massive rifts that can bring interesting side stories to the main plot.