Hi all , I’m currently in the process of getting an entry level MMC, I can’t seem to find an answer online about jobs. How much harder is it for me to find a ordinary seaman position without a diploma or GED? Is it required to be able to get ANY ordinary seaman position? Thank you

Some companies may ask, but not many, if you join a Union and ship out of the Hall it won’t be an issue, mostly if you have an MMC, TWIC Passport, STCW, Physical, and Drug Screen you can be hired. I would recommend getting upgraded as soon as you can though.

You also may wish to consider getting GED or completing high school, if you ship you will have the free time and money for school.

Thanks for the reply. I’m having trouble finding jobs / unions. Are there specific websites for maritime positions? Mm I able to join a union as soon as I get my mmc ? Also when you mean upgrade what do you mean by that?

You will everything MMC, TWIC, Passport, STCW, Physical and drug screen to get into a Union.

Upgrade means sitting for ratings like AB, or QMED

What do you want to ship as? What are your long term goals?

I’d like to get in MSC , gain experience there and go through their OSAP program and go from there. But I’m now reading online it’s pretty hard to get into a ship that goes out to sea without a union or MSC.

What department do you wish to sail in?

Deck or culinary anything to get my foot in the door .

At the very least you should get a ged for yourself. However, from what I’ve observed, this is one of the few remaining industries where someone with or without a high school education can prosper. When an employer is going thru resumes could you not having one keep you from being considered for a job? Possibly. In general, maritime employers care more about your sea going experience and credentials, but keep in mind these days maritime academy graduates are taking entry level jobs.
Some companies favor academy/college people over real world experience too. So in a nutshell, you can’t go wrong with having as much education as possible.

Try here


Pretty sure I sail with a lot of guys who don’t have a diploma or ged


Man, I know I did in my day. . . .

I do not have a ged or a diploma. That being said I currently hold a 1600 ton masters with towing endorsement, stcw endorsements and some extra certs. I currently sail as a mate for a very large tug / barge oil transportation company. Every application I have sent in and during interviews I always mention that I do not have a hs diploma or a ged, if asked during the interview why I do not have one I tell them the truth and my reasoning and it never gets brought up again. It seems to me that if you have the license and experience the ged will not hold you back. I was just able to get a good friend on mine on tugs as an ordinary and he does not have a ged either. So it’s not impossible at all. My only reason on getting my ged here soon is so my child cannot throw in my face when they are older “we’ll dad didn’t graduate”. Good luck on your adventure