Ay thoughts about this rosey employment picture painted in Professional Mariner mag?


#1

I frankly am pretty sceptical about their claims but that is my nature and I hope I am wrong and they are right. What does everyone else think?

<TABLE cellSpacing=5 cellPadding=5 width=“100%” border=0><TBODY><TR><TD>[B]Despite a weakening economy, demand for trained mariners remains firm[/B]
Rich Miller
</TD></TR><TR><TD>The demand for licensed mariners remains strong despite the global economic downturn, with the maritime academies and other training schools reporting increased enrollment and a high rate of job placement for graduates.

[LEFT]<TABLE style=“WIDTH: 100px; HEIGHT: 200px” cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=5 align=right border=0><TBODY><TR><TD><!-- img tag goes here --></TD></TR><TR><TD style=“PADDING-RIGHT: 10px; PADDING-LEFT: 10px; FONT-SIZE: 8pt; COLOR: #800000; FONT-STYLE: italic; FONT-FAMILY: Verdana”><!-- Caption goes here --></TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>According to the U.S. Maritime Administration (MarAd), approximately 85 percent of graduates who earned merchant marine licenses from the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point and the six state maritime academies in 2008 are now employed afloat in the industry or in the U.S. military. Total employment for 2008 licensed graduates, including those who have found shoreside jobs in fields like shipyard management and transportation logistics, exceeds 95 percent. [/LEFT]

[LEFT]“This data indicates that the job market for merchant marine officers remains robust,” said U.S. Maritime Administrator Sean Connaughton. “There is a growing worldwide demand for fully trained merchant marine officers and licensed mariners. Excellent training combined with ongoing global trade expansion will continue to make graduates of U.S. maritime colleges among the most qualified and employable mariners in the world.” [/LEFT]

[LEFT]Increasing enrollment at Kings Point and the six state maritime academies — in California, Maine, Michigan, Massachusetts, Texas and New York — reflects that demand, said Anne Dougherty, director of MarAd’s Office of Maritime Workforce Development. While jobs cuts have become the norm across the industrialized world, mariners haven’t felt the same impact. [/LEFT]

[LEFT]<TABLE style=“WIDTH: 100px; HEIGHT: 200px” cellSpacing=0 cellPadding=5 align=right border=0><TBODY><TR><TD><!-- img tag goes here --></TD></TR><TR><TD style=“PADDING-RIGHT: 10px; PADDING-LEFT: 10px; FONT-SIZE: 8pt; COLOR: #800000; FONT-STYLE: italic; FONT-FAMILY: Verdana”><!-- Caption goes here --></TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>“Until we start seeing companies laying up ships because they have no cargo to carry, it’s not going to be a big issue,” Dougherty said. “Historically there have been times with a plethora of jobs and times when jobs have been scarce. It’s a cycle. Even now we are seeing (maritime) industry expansion, in the Gulf of Mexico for example, that reflects employment opportunities.” [/LEFT]

[LEFT]Capt. Robert Glover, director of education at the Northeast Maritime Institute in Fairhaven, Mass., said in November that enrollment at the school has also remained strong despite the economy. [/LEFT]

[LEFT]“We saw a little bit of a slowdown, especially last summer with the effect of gas prices, but it didn’t last,” he said. “The only thing that’s happening now is that people are hesitating and waiting to get training until the last minute. But our December classes are already two-thirds full, and we expect enrollment to continue to grow.” [/LEFT]

[LEFT]The outlook is much the same at the Pacific Maritime Institute in Seattle, where enrollment has been increasing about 10 percent a year, said school director Gregg Trunnell. [/LEFT]

[LEFT]“When you look at it internationally, (the economy) has had a huge effect,” he said. “Domestically so far, knock on wood, we have seen nothing in the industry, especially with oil prices going down. As for the future impact, it’s really hard to say. We are budgeting for a decline, but so far we have seen nothing like that.” [/LEFT]

[LEFT]Glover said stringent requirement under the Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping (STCW) are continuing to have more of an effect on mariners than the latest economic concerns. [/LEFT]

[LEFT]“We’re still seeing a definite trend toward a shortage of qualified people, predominantly in the tug and barge and oil industry,” he said. “It’s mostly being driven by regulations. A lot of operators now want people with qualifications above and beyond what the Coast Guard would demand, often for insurance reasons.” [/LEFT]

[LEFT]The trend has fueled a need for training and experience that in past years was often obtained at sea in service with a company. With the coming of STCW, certification is now needed beforehand at a cost that many companies are reluctant to bear. [/LEFT]

[LEFT]“Most of the demand for merchant mariners is in the tug and towing industry,” Trunnell said. “In the towing sector before STCW, companies promoted 95 percent of their people from within, moving them up the ladder. They can no longer do that due to the expense of STCW. Now companies have one option, and that’s to go to the maritime academies.” [/LEFT]

[LEFT]Dougherty said companies that don’t operate on the water realize that as well, recruiting academy graduates for their training and expertise. [/LEFT]

[LEFT]“When academies hold career days, there are always a large number of shoreside companies that come to tap graduates from our four-year programs,” she said. “What we’re seeing is a lot of shore-based grads who are not going out to sea.” [/LEFT]

[LEFT]The result is that although training enrollments are growing, the number of licensed and qualified mariners is still falling short of what is needed, both domestically and globally. This is especially true for deep-sea operations, particularly the energy sector, where foreign-flagged vessels are the rule and American mariners traditionally have been in the minority. [/LEFT]

[LEFT]Competition for workers may be changing that dynamic, Dougherty said. [/LEFT]

[LEFT]“U.S. mariners have always been too expensive historically for international operators, but wages are rising internationally to help close that gap,” she said. “It has never been an issue of quality, but always an issue of cost.” [/LEFT]

[LEFT]As crude petroleum becomes more difficult to obtain and companies move farther out to sea to drill for it, the need for larger ships and the personnel to handle them will put more pressure on the available pool of qualified workers. [/LEFT]

[LEFT]“(U.S. merchant marine academies) graduate over 700 candidates annually who are deep-sea qualified for unlimited horsepower and unlimited tonnage,” Dougherty said. “But in the Gulf of Mexico alone, they are going to need 4,000 qualified mariners in the next five years to serve on larger vessels.” [/LEFT]

[LEFT]Trunnell said that while adding to enrollment will help alleviate the problem, it won’t be enough. He said the real solution is apprenticeships, which allow mariners to gain experience in the service of a company. [/LEFT]

[LEFT]“The key is that companies have to start building their own work forces,” he said. “Apprenticeships combine STCW and sea time.” [/LEFT]

[LEFT]To that end, Pacific Maritime Institute — in collaboration with Dunlap Towing, Sause Brothers, Seacoast Towing and Western Towboat — launched an apprenticeship program in 2006 through the school’s workboat academy. It combines 25 weeks of classroom, laboratory and simulation instruction with one year of structured onboard training. As of January 2008, the program had 70 students enrolled. [/LEFT]

[LEFT]“Regardless of the type of vessel being manned, the number of candidates needed to keep pace with the growing demand will have to more than double,” Trunnell wrote in the Fall 2008 issue of the Coast Guard’s Proceedings magazine. [/LEFT]

[LEFT]“The benefits of an apprentice system that breeds (company) loyalty cannot be discounted. In fact, this reinforces what we should already know — the best way to develop competent and loyal mariners is from within, using an apprentice system that is as old as time itself.” [/LEFT]

</TD></TR></TBODY></TABLE>


#2

I’m still looking for work. Mate 500 Ton w/MOTV, AB AGT, Tankerman DL/PIC. I’m in good health, not a drunk, drugy and no maritime accidents. Outlook would probably be different for me if I hadn’t been around as a boy to see President Kennedy take office.


#3

With all due respect to the writers and editors at professional mariner magazine they don’t know what they are talking about. They look at some stats and talk to people in the maritime education industry who do a good job at training but whose very livelihood depends on the perception of growth in the maritime industry. I don’t think they have stepped foot in the union halls and talked to the men who’ve sat their for months with not so much a a night mate call. Or the dozen or so mates and engineers from my class at CMA who put in resumes for every opening they can find and don’t get so much as a thanks for applying from the companies. Articles like this make me angry because the powers that be have let the American merchant marine die on the vine while Europeans have thrived to the point where they move into our waters to profit off our resourses and all Professional Mariner have to say is “good job”


#4

My thoughts exactly abergeron! The one thing I can recommend is that you go back and read the threads posted my me on the foreign mariner invasion in the Gulf and then take action. There are good jobs which are supposed to filled by American mariners like yourself but instead are filled with almost every other nationality…IN OUR WATERS!

PM me if you want some more info on what actions I recommend you take.

thanks


#5

I am curious to know, if someone is a union member can you work non union jobs, I ask this because I have never worked in a union.


#6

[quote=c.captain;10258]My thoughts exactly abergeron! The one thing I can recommend is that you go back and read the threads posted my me on the foreign mariner invasion in the Gulf and then take action. There are good jobs which are supposed to filled by American mariners like yourself but instead are filled with almost every other nationality…IN OUR WATERS!

PM me if you want some more info on what actions I recommend you take.

thanks[/quote]
To all you Mariners that have been posting and reading the posts about the foreign companies working in U.S. waters and not being required (as we are) to employ U.S. Mariner on their vessels. I have a friend on Dauphin Island who was a former reporter for NBC’s local affiliate who is very interested in receiving emails and opinions on the subject and wants to do something about it officially. He can get CNN, or NBC to do a national expose on what is happening to us American Merchant Seamen in regards to the blatant disregard for the Jones Act by our own Government. But he needs input and lots of it. This kind of action does not happen overnight and he needs ammunition that he can present to the news organisations. His email address is radiodauphinisland@hotmail.com and he is waiting to hear from you. His name is John Watkins. Remember the U.S.M.M. motto
Acta Non Verba…Action Not Words!!!1


#7

I don’t know why these Maritime Mags. keep trying to paint a rosy picture of the U.S. Maritime Industury and its lack of jobs. To come by a steady deep sea sailing job in near impossible for any American deck officer both through the Union halls and by the company. The jobs and ships are being sold out to foreign companies which refuse to hire American sailors. I have been applying for over 8 months for either a 3rd or 2nd Mate job to get back out on the open water and sailing again. Luckily I have a job, but I’m tired of staring at the same patch of water from this drillship. As a acadmey grad I completely agree with steve, we need some action in order to assist our fellow sailors both brown or blue water and I think an expose on the plight that our industry is facing is key to bringing public awareness.


#8

I choked on the first part of that article. I can’t speak for the other Maritime Academies but Cal Maritime has more students becuase the nonlicensed Majors such as Business and Global Studies, not because there is an increase in demand. I’ve been searching for a better job for months with no substantial bites.


#9

lol I’ll trade you an MSC job with plenty of new water explore for that Drillship job. Hell all i want is decent pay and some measure of a home life.


#10

you can but once you get your book it is frowned upon.