I am not so much looking for a 'tank' style such as wow or some such, but def looking to be able to absorb maassive amounts of damage, yet still deal enough to '****' off enemies enough so that they focus fire on me more so than science vessels or escorts. This is of course 'aggro' 'threat' etc, but not even sure what kind of mechanics the game has for this or not.
My main concern with being a tactical officer vs. an engineer is at higher levels you can 'train' your officers of the same class, and for a 'tank' ie. survability situation it probably makes more sense to train your engineers than your tac officers am i right?
Yes you are right in a sense - it really is up to you. All I am saying is from what I have experienced, when you output a massive burst of damage the enemy will often times turn to focus it's fire on you. If it is convenient for the enemy to start firing on you now because the other target flew out of it's main damage window, it will often switch as well. There really is no fail safe way to keep an enemy firing at you, which is what my understanding was the role of WOW tanks. Most people who use the wording Tank on here want to be what a WOW tank was, so I apologize for misunderstanding.
But like I said, if you want to soak a lot of damage then cruiser is probably your best bet. If you want to do enough damage to keep an enemy consistently firing on you, then a Tactical captain can best achieve this assuming he has spent his skill points wisely, uses the right equipment, and then uses his Tactical only buffs.
Lastly, training your BO's seems to be a big concern for people. Honestly, you might find by the time you are getting to your skills which when you cap allow you to train something, you simply don't have the skill points to actually cap that skill without handicapping yourself in another area. It sounds like you already have a friend or two you play with (the science vessel) so you can always get others to train your engineers for you. Like you could train their tactical officers for them. It really is up to you however.