Apprenticeship for State Pilot License

“The New Jersey Maritime & Docking Pilot Commission and the Board of Commissioners of Pilots of the State of New York are seeking applicants for the state maritime pilot apprenticeship program with the United New York and New Jersey Sandy Hook Pilots’ Benevolent Associations. The program, which is a prerequisite to a ship pilots’ license in either state, is open to any United States citizen not less than the age of 18 and not more than 27 by April 15, who can meet certain physical requirements and has attained a Bachelor’s Degree from an accredited institution BY JUNE 30TH OF THE YEAR OF APPLICATION. Full details on the program and the requirements will be included with the application form. Such forms may be obtained without charge by writing to: Sandy Hook Pilots’ Association, 201 Edgewater Street, Staten Island, NY 10305. Applications shall be filed by mail at the above address no later than April 15. A scheduled test will be conducted by an independent testing entity to evaluate all applicants. A testing fee will be required. Selection of apprenticeships, as needed, will be made from a ranked certified list of qualified applicants authorized and maintained by the State Pilots Boards for a two year period. Selection of qualified applicants shall be made on the basis of qualifications alone under the applicable Navigation Law and Regulations ( including amendments) of the States of New York and New Jersey without regard to race, creed, color, national origin, ancestry, marital status, sex, or liability for service in the Armed Forces of the United States, in full accordance with the objective standards which permit review, after full and fair opportunity for application. This program shall be operated on a completely non-discriminatory basis.”

I saw this ad and am just a little curious how it works. For example, no marine experience required? A five year apprenticeship and that is it? Never have to sail out of sight of land? Never have to take green waves? No command or leadership experience? A Bachelor’s Degree is required…is the subject irrelevant, like knitting for example? So someone who is 28+ say, with a master’s license is not suitable? Or does he have another route into this type of pilotage?

Or perhaps today’s simulator training is just so good that real “sea time” is just a thing of the past and we need to get over it.