Honesty On Jobs for the OTHER Gender

Ok. I do understand that a company is not going to hire a female that does not have the credentials needed, in THIS field.

What I would like to know, and be settled with is the[U] honest truth[/U]. In my original post, I asked about jobs women can seek in this industry, and…out of much of the responses, there was only one person who casually mentioned a cook.

When contacting companies, being a female–they will direct you into more domestic jobs.

[B]Should I just forget about it?[/B]

It’s hard trying to break through in a career choice that, in the end, yields nothing more than a mop or a hair net…standing behind a stove.

[quote=Ashley;16006]Ok. I do understand that a company is not going to hire a female that does not have the credentials needed, in THIS field.

What I would like to know, and be settled with is the[U] honest truth[/U]. In my original post, I asked about jobs women can seek in this industry, and…out of much of the responses, there was only one person who casually mentioned a cook.

When contacting companies, being a female–they will direct you into more domestic jobs.

[B]Should I just forget about it?[/B]

It’s hard trying to break through in a career choice that, in the end, yields nothing more than a mop or a hair net…standing behind a stove.[/quote]

In my many years of going to sea I have worked with many female ABs, Engineers, Mates, and Masters. Though most females tend to be better cooks than males (other than barbecueing :rolleyes:) they are certainly not limited to domestic only duties. I so much liked and respected my last female supply boat Mate that I married her…

Totally depends on the individual. Decking requires some upper body strength, can the decky heave hard when it’s really needed? Probably the best all-around deckhand I’ve ever worked with was a female, but she had a professional attitude and and worked out regularly. She might not have been able to do heavy lifting all day but when it was required she could be counted on to get the job done.

I do lift a lot of weights, which is why I think that lifting things wouldn’t be out of my league, per ce.
I’m no fool…I do know a man’s strength is much more than mines–but I can definitely do more than shuffle and push papers.

I know they aren’t limited to THOSE–but realistically speaking, that is all I hear.

You were playing around on your ship! LOL :wink:

Attitude is everything!


first and formost we are all mariners aboard…I too have worked with your gender aboard…have found that the “gender card” like all the other cards are best left on the dock with the rest of the refuse…it is all about professionalism and being able to fulfill your billet aboard…everything else is not worthy of my time or consideration…there are woman officers on this board who are more adept at explaining this distinction than me…maybe one will voice an opinion, but won’t be surprised if they don’t…to me there is no gender aboard only mariners and crew!!

Decking does require some upper body strength, but I can say that I have worked next to some guys that were so weak they couldn’t beat their way out of a wet paper sack. Every individual is different. In the past I would assign different duties to different skill sets and physical ability. Nothing gender related, but I wouldn’t send a 60 year old man with a history of back problems to picks up sack of cargo chains.

Ashley if this is really what you want to do you should be firm and make it clear what your interests are to a prospective employer. I can tell you one thing I am way better in the kitchen than my wife. Most of the cooks I have had on the anchor handlers were men. All of the cooks on the rig here are men. I am just rambling, but there are positions for females. You just have to keep trying.


Let me tell you what, the last thing any of my shipmates want is a meal cooked by me. But let me tell you something else, I am usually the first one asked to help out with a job on deck because I work my ass off, never complain, and try to maintain a steady state of perspective at all times.

That being said, I am also pretty ingenious at figuring out ways to get around my less-than-a-guys upper body strength. While I will freely admit that there are just some tasks that require hulking strength, most jobs have an intelligent work around, and both men and women should exercise the grey matter before their muscles. That’s called good seamanship.

Here’s some advice. When you get onboard your ship, see what the lay of the land is. If everybody shares in the cooking duties, then do your part without complaint. But if it seems like you are getting stuck with a truly inordinate amount of cooking duties, I would become the worst cook in the world, smile, say “oops, I burnt the pot roast again, sorry it is so dry”. And then watch how fast you end up back on deck.

Cpt. Fran!!! LOL!!!
Now that advice is something that indeed makes me laugh.

My work ethic is impeccable. I understand that what you’re saying would come as a ‘last resort’ thing; but then, I still can’t see myself doing something like that in FEAR that I’d get stamped as the lady who ‘can’t EVEN cook right…’ as just 1 no. of the many things they may joke about.

Thank you for the response. This Really helps me.
(((((((((((((Capt. Fran)))))))))))))))))))

Sea Dog,

I have nothing to prove to anyone. The work I do speaks for itself; having said THAT, it’s getting someone to take me seriously. True, women who are mariners DO NOT openly share information–that is another indication that makes me believe there are not a whole lot of them doing ANYTHING meaningful.
I know they’re out there. Just don’t know any from my state that don’t do anything more but cook.

Capt. Lee,

See–you are 1 of the rare employers that wouldn’t make a 60 yr old with ailments pick up heavy equipment. One of my friends worked for an oilfield tool & equipment co. and that NEVER fazed them one bit. They would put on PAPER WORK for the individual NOT to lift over a specified poundage, but…usually, that did not reflect on the day-to-day orders. You were still EXPECTED to carry on.

Look, the men in my family do EVERYTHING–cook, clean, iron…my dad and all of my uncles cook the best. I’m not quite sure what happened to the women in the family? LOL With the exception of me, because I can def. cook, if nothing else.

But, the encouragement goes a long way. I just don’t want to get TOO old before I have a chance at anything. :wink:

The first maritime job I ever had i worked for a female 1600 ton master W/ oceans. They were in the Navy, but since getting out and getting back out here I’ve not worked with any females. I know they are there I hear females on the radio all the time, wich seems to me that they do more than just cook.

You were playing around on your ship! LOL :wink:

I know you were just kidding with that statement, If you are letting the opinion of others interfere with the advancement in your career, perhaps you should check the color of your hair…just kidding!!!

Ashley- I have to say that you are correct in your thinking. I work for a large tugboat company who does harbor work in a major U.S. city. They have a standing policy that they will only put women on our tugs that have a seperate bathroom for them. But the catch is there is only 1 tug in the fleet that has those accomodations and it stays off shore and is never in the harbor and that tug always has a so-called “full” crew for hitch changes. Funny how no other tug has this. Honestly, alot of maritime companies cannot stomach the fear of being sued. They know that some of the people they hire may me proned to make advances or behave inappropriately if the vessel was co-ed. It is a dirty little secret that pretty much everyone that works aboard vessels knows and it is sad. I am a QMED with a PIC. I do ship bunkering as well as engineroom work,and there is nothing about my job that a female could not do. I am 6’4" and 245lbs and the only thing my size helps me with is hitting my freakin’ head on every single thing aboard a ship. When i used to be on deck true heavy lifting happened very rarely and you will always have help anyway. Keep trying. SCREW being a cook!


I work boats NOT ships…therefore “accommodations” are “limited”…we live/work in a close environment…there is usually very little room if any at all for “gender accomidation”…if you are able to meet the USCG/management physical criteria, have the necessary knowledge and skill sets for your billet aboard and are willing to tolerate the vessel working/living enviroment then you are welcome aboard regardless of gender…this is the way I have been trained…like I stated on more than one occasion all the rest is crap and is not be tolerated!!

as far as the “domestic” duties aboard…a crew member who is adept at cooking, maintaining a clean well organized vessel regardless of their billet is usually well appreciated by ALL onboard…time permitting we ALL cook aboard the vessel if there isn’t a working cook!!

**BTW most GOOD boat deckhands are real GOOD at using the stove, sink, broom, mop, bowl brush, 409/rag in addition to being able to perform the myriad of duties required on deck…those are the GOOD ones that are welcomed in the wheelhouse to observe and learn!!

Thank you for taking the time to respond ‘honestly’ from your perspective. What you have mentioned may be why there is no one that gives me the time of day. I am very “fresh” to this industry. I haven’t had any military background to support it either. Most probably, the women who succeed mostly in the field may have served (that aren’t cooks).
I think I need to get my masters in business and run things from a different angle.

You’re a funny guy, LOL! I hope you have learned to be more alert and flexible to stop getting injured on the job. LOL


After I got out of the service, I drifted for awhile in the maritime industry, but eventually found myself working on small overnight passenger vessels. Although most of the women on those ships were in the Hotel department, there were quite a few of us in the deck department and in the pilothouse - and I was the only one that had any prior service. By the way, until I got promoted to Captain, I always had to share my room, usually with the other mate, and that person was usually a guy. No big deal because we just learned to respect each other’s space and schedule, but I do want to acknowledge that I was pretty lucky and didn’t have too many idiots to contend with. (Although I’ve now seen more old guys in tighty whiteys than any one person should ever have to…)

On one of the boats I sailed with a woman who was in her upper 50s, had been a really high mucky-muck executive at Xerox, then chucked it all and found herself working for me as a deckhand. There were definite limitations to her upper body strength, but like Capt. Fran said, there are always workarounds. The guys figured out pretty quickly that she had an amazing work ethic, never complained, rarely asked for help and was always figuring out how to “work smarter, not harder”. And since she had such a great attitude about her work, her male deck partners always enjoyed working alongside her.

Anyway, my point is to let you know that there are many many segments in the maritime industry and we would all be lying if we said they were all equally progressive and welcoming of women into their ranks. If you want some information on the small passenger vessel industry, shoot me a PM and we can chat about it.

Best of luck,

If you do the job you signed on to do, with determination and a solid work ethic, show respect where deserved and don’t ask for special priviledges … tell the guys to eat shit at all the right times etc … you’ld be a welcome crewmember. However if you sign on to do the job, don’t ask for “any” considerations whether your seventy years old or are suffering from cramps … suck it up or get gone, no one else should have to pick up your slack.

Suck it up, get out there and do it … you’ll gain the respect you deserve and find people who are more than willing to help you along the way to the top … once there run the ship your way. No damn doylies on the bridge though :wink:

:eek: Ok, guys…I’m not a weak person–neither mentally nor physically.
Sometimes it’s just hard going after something when it’s not commonly sought after by the masses.

I don’t need “grab yourself by the boot-straps” pep talks. I do appreciate everyone’s opinions on this issue–I have no one else to ask.

Are there any Louisiana women on here? Besides me? LOL
I’m VERY close by Morgan City, and the maritime industry has always fascinated me. I really wish that these jobs would be more publicized than they are. Unfortunately, they aren’t. Well, not to me anyway.

Before I signed onto Gcaptian, a Cpt that frequents between hitches in Lafayette, La., made it seem as though it wouldn’t be ‘hard.’ But, I’m not going to be anyone’s flunky just to get aboard something.

And, I currently make close to 40K right now. I’m looking for something that would suit me either making THAT, or more.

Any suggestions?