AMO came to the academy last week to speak of its new scholarship program it was extending to third classmen. The offer was that if you apply and are accepted to the program, they will give you $150 per month stipend and then senior year that is extended to $200. This also included a free Junior year training program at their STAR Center during the summer which could include PIC certification, small arms, BST, & Fast Rescue. This training would also count as my internship.
One of the things that made me interested most in the program was not only that I would get early affiliation with the union, but also that their union hall is online which would enable me to be more mobile. What I also learned was that MMP has an Associates program of a completely different sort.
Theirs is that I would pay a total of $200 while in school that would cover my membership costs over the next three years after I graduate. I am aware that wages are higher at MMP, but that jobs are also harder to come by and it requires going to a union hall, sometimes for weeks to obtain a job. The recruiter informed me that if I didn’t get a job that day there would always be night watch jobs that paid around $450 a night that were always hiring. I want to be a career mariner once I graduate, so…
I have a few questions:
Besides the union halls are there any major difference between AMO & MMP?
In your experience, do you think the pay cut taken by going AMO is worth the expense of greater rates once I would establish points with MMP?
One of the major reasons I hear for the condemning of the over-the-phone union system is a lack of transparency and people getting screwed because of it. Is this true?
I apologize for the lengthy post, but I am trying to get as much information as I can before I head out for sea year. Thank you for any info you have.