Licences, Classes and Hours, Oh My

Hello all,

My name’s Jason, I hail from the cubicle farms of eastern Virginia. I’m currently trying to get a commission in the NOAA Corps which would land me 13 weeks at Kings Point and then the enjoyable dynamic career on the seas I’ve been chasing for a while. Just one more month until I hear whether I got it this time or I’m applying again.

While I wait, I’m still rotting in a cubicle. I’m curious about what it takes to get “in” as a licensed mariner. I don’t have any working experience on boats. My only experience is as a small-boat crewmember and coxswain trainee in the USCG Auxiliary (recreational boats).

From what I can see, if I wanted to get a license I need hours on a commercial boat. Is that right?

I may have never been on a commercial boat before, but I CAN tell Anabasis what relative bearings are, I can navigate from a chart, I can steer, and I’m fairly certain I can handle a mop or paintbrush. I would have thought that, if I could pass the exams, I could do the task, but that doesn’t look to be the way it works. I have actually applied for several entry-level positions with various tug companies but never heard back from any of them. I can only assume there are enough folks who grew up mucking about in boats that they don’t have needs for a boat minded programmer.

So, what are my options?

Auxil - Hey, your sea time does not have to be on a commerical vesel. A friend of mine is a chief engineer, and needed to get his 100 T for the new job he has. He went back and included time spent kayaking. Unfortunately for him, his time on brown water as an engineer did not count as sea time for his 100 T.

Be sure to keep a log for each boat you have been on, and have the captain / owner sign it. It should include the vessel’s name, registration & size (tonnage if applicable,) what bodies of water (inland, near coastal, etc), and your social security number. Also the length of time each day, ie four hours (half day) eight hours (full day) or 12 hours (1.5 days).

Good luck with your application!

You can get a 100-ton inland license with seatime in you own boat with 1 day working on a 100-ton or over boat,

MATE 200 – (10.427)
A. 360 days of service in the deck department on Ocean or N/C waters.

  1. 180 days of service must be in Ocean or N/C waters

GET YOU AB ticket as soon as you can