SIU unlicensed apprentice program


There are a number of approaches all dependent of what you are looking for in the end game. If it is a full complete education (degree + license) then one of the academies is well worth considering. All have their strong points and any of them will get you there. You are looking at a timeline of 4 years in addition to the tuition costs.

As mentioned AMO has a 2 year program that maybe worth considering. If accepted and you make it through you can get your 3rd’s license but understand there is a commitment to join the AMO and sail for 5 years (I think it is only 5).

There is the SIU’s Apprentice program, if you can put up with the accompanying BS, will get you started. (The BS part is just one of life’s lesson’s, IMO) The time line to get a license is definitely longer but all the training required is available via their school and a means to work. There is also a way to earn an Associate Degree if that is something you really, really want.

There are other schools such as Seattle Central College’s Seattle Maritime Academy (Junior College) that may fit the bill to get one started but it is not a license program per se.


As Chief Seadog said, it depends on your endgame. As in what do you want to be doing in 10 years, 20 years? As for academy programs you can get an engineer’s license with either a BS degree or a BE degree. A BE is far more valuable if and when you want to do shoreside engineering work.


True unless you ever want to go shoreside. That’s where a degree could have the advantage


what Is the difference in BS and BE? Both are in engineering so they sound the same, but I don’t know


A Bachelor’s of Science vs a Bachelor’s of Engineering. The BS is a bit easier and is a way to get the 3AE license, but any of the BE Majors are what I’d call a proper engineering degree. But what do I know, I’m just a Mate.


A BE degree will usually be a little more technical in that there are more engineering courses required in the program. The two degrees however are very, very similar. I see more of a distinction in graduate programs than in Bachelor degrees.


That’s where I’m confused. I have a BS in Marine engineering technology. The academies offer the BS in some sort of engineering degree. I don’t know any hat offer a BE. I could be wrong I just never heard it called that before. Just because I’m engineer doesn’t mean I know shit either…lol


I know at SUNY they had Bachelor’s of Engineering in Marine Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, etc. Those were usually considered full engineering degrees that you could also get a PE or FE or whichever is first. Then they had the BS, which was great if you just wanted the engineering license, and just focused mostly on what work a ships engineer would do operationally.


Ok that makes sense. Cal only offers BS degree in Marine engineering, mechanical engineering and facilities engineering. All of which you could take the FE test and later the PE.


There no official difference between BS in Engineering and a BE degree and universities rarely offer both degree types in the same subject in order to compare which is better/harder/etc. (I did see some site claim that BS degrees tend to be more theory than BE but there’s not much proof of that.) In the private sector the degree major and it’s accreditation is what matters, not whether it was a BS or BE.

Virginia Tech has one of the best undergraduate engineering schools in the country and they only offer Bachelor of Science degrees.


When I went to KP, I was told that it would be difficult to be able to sit for a PE license exam with the BS in Engineering. With my class, they started to offer classes that would eventually be used to accredit a BE degree and was told it would be retroactive (of course it wasn’t).


I don’t think that’s BS vs BE but an accreditation issue. If their BS was ABET accredited then there shouldn’t have been any problems.


I believe capt is right. ABET accredited should allow for the EIT exam. I also think each state is different in requirements. I looked into it in WA and it states that if you have 4 years experiences you can sit for the exam


I though that once you do a few years at sea then it wouldn’t matter what if it was a BS or BE degree that you got. Also, why are most people pushing to go the engine route as opposed to the deck route if the pay would roughly be the same?


There is a lot more employment available afloat and ashore for engineers.


I certainly had little problem finding work when I was sailing, and also since I have been ashore.


Because the OP specifically asked about becoming an engineer…


Every unmanned ER ship I have been on engineers make more. Op wants to be an engineer but I would suggest academy for deck as well.


I should have clarified, what I meant was : I was just curious why in general most people push for the engine route


There are more opportunities for engineers ashore so more engineers quit sailing for shore jobs so there are also more jobs available for engineers on vessels.