So I posted another thread in another part of the Forum regarding a Foreign National obtaining a USCG Credentials and was lucky to receive an overwhelming amount of responses.
To summarize and recap for some:I am a British Marine Engineer with Alien Resident status, currently continuing my journey through the US Immigration process. I currently hold a UK Maritime and Coastguard Agency (UK MCGA) Chief Engineer Unlimited license, accompanied with a significant amount of sea time. I’ve started the process of applying for my QMED All Ratings credentials and am hoping to sit the exams come March when I pay off again, although with the current Government shutdowns, I don’t know if that’s a realistic hope or not.
The main idea behind me getting the US Merchant Mariner Credential(s) is to build up sea time before becoming a US Citizen (or Dual Citizen) and to get some temporary work in doing something I’m at least familiar with between contracts. I’m currently sailing as Staff Chief Engineer with a 3 month on/3 month off rotation.
Has anyone got any advice for getting my foot in the door with some temporary work on harbor tugs, inland waterways vessels, that sort of thing? I’m living in Florida, and would love to find something in one of the larger ports in state, but am willing to travel somewhat as well. I know it’s a question that’s been asked before, and I am in the process of going through the posts (MASSIVE thanks to Bucko for putting together the " [Big ol’ maritime company list posts together). Having not worked in unionized/organized labor before, I have NO clue how it works and how I would go about presenting myself for temporary work. How are the dues paid and how much are they? I have a bunch of other similar questions, but I’m hoping some of you folk will point me in the right direction.
Thanks in advance, God speed and smooth sailing!