[QUOTE=Evergreenmonster;186569]I’m in my early 20s lifelong resident of Maryland and hoping to make unionized seafaring a permanent career.
Too bad I have no idea what the pay is actually like. I asked the Baltimore Port Agent if I could look over SIUs collective bargaining agreements and was told no, I should save those questions for the Harry Lundeberg school.
I found a list of salaries for the Military Sealift Command.
Are these comparable to union workers compensation?
I was also told by the Port Agent union seafarers typically take jobs in just one department. When I asked which department has the most work available right now she suggested the Steward department. I know that steward positions never require licensed seafarers and there’s not really a hawsepipe path of advancement open to them, right? I’m not sure what the best department would be 20 or 30 years down the line.
Id be really thankful for any advice, it’s a big choice to make without knowing much.[/QUOTE]
I’m a graduate of the program from 2012, and here’s what I found.
Pay varies from contract to contract. Generally speaking Tankers usually have the best paying contracts while say a Ro/Ro is usually on the lower end, the MSC pay scale for entry level was pretty even with the Ro/Ro I was on, but the AB was making less, as I said it varies from ship to ship so how much you make can and will depend on your department and how much OT you work as well. Most ships I’ve worked on the AB and Oiler got the same pay and OT rate while the higher level QMEDS and the Bosun of course received more.
And yes, the graduate program eventually wants you to choose one department, when I was there phase I was 3 months at school, then phase II was 3 months at sea where you work a month in each department to give you a feel for what you like best, you go back for Phase III fot two months to choose your department and get government vessel,and tanker man assist. Then they give you your first actual entry level job. You then go back for a month to upgrade to AB,Oiler or steward and what not. The school and even union don’t really like if you cross deck departments for some reason.
I personally went Engineering because I feel it gives me the experience to quit sailing if I want and find a job else where,
As for what department sees the most jobs? I couldn’t tell you I’ve been out of deep sea and with a harbor tug company for two years now, I know when I used to do the hall AB jobs and Steward jobs were a dime a dozen compared to finding Oiler jobs.