Nautical and marine graduates have other career opportunities available aside from becoming a seafarer.
You don’t have to blindly follow the crowd and take the path most taken. It’s already overcrowded and many gave up that idea due to desperation.
Besides, we sometimes know in our hearts that seafaring is not for us. I met quite a few who can’t adapt to life at sea. However, they are very interested in working in the maritime industry.
If you are one of those people, read on. But first, let’s take a look at why career opportunities for nautical and marine graduates seem few and limited. This can be rooted in school.
It’s not taught in school
At a maritime college, we are sold on the idea of seeing the world for free while earning real dollars. We saw this as good. Working on merchant ships seemed like the only path if we took a BSMT or BSMarE course.
Besides, the curriculum has specific program descriptions for those taking nautical or marine courses. It is anchored on Regulation II/I of the STCW Convention, 1978, as amended.
Specifically, it states that the maritime education program shall cover mandatory education and training of Officers in Charge of Navigational Watch and Engineering Watch.
Such training puts emphasis on becoming a competent officer.
The idea strengthened with the establishment of maritime scholarships all over the country.
Specific Professions/ Career Opportunities for BSMT and BSMarE Graduates
During my time in college, I only knew two things about where this career could go. The first was working on merchant ships. The second was becoming part of the Philippine Coast Guard.
However, there are other options that we can explore here. If you feel that seafaring is not for you after having a taste of the sea life, take a look at these other career opportunities.
Career Professions for Bachelor of Science in Marine Transportation (BSMT) and Marine Engineering (BSMarE) Graduates
Graduates of the BSMT and BSMarE programs may find careers in the following fields.
1) Merchant Marine profession including offshore – normal go-to of maritime graduates.
2) Maritime Industry– everything related to the maritime sector is often ancillary to shipping. They are shore-based having direct involvement with ships.
- Shipbuilding and ship repair– shipyard jobs. If you happen to be in a shipyard, observe how they work especially the high-ranking officers.
- Ship operations and management– running the ship on the shoreside. This is where crewing, company employees, and superintendents belong.
- Port operations and management– in charge of the safe and efficient movements in the port. Examples of career opportunities in this area are port managers, harbor masters, port captains, and vessel traffic controllers.
- Ship surveying and inspection– third-party surveyors for vessels or their cargoes. This may include port state control officers, vetting inspectors, cargo surveyors, class surveyors, etc.
- Ship Brokerage– connecting shipowners and cargo owners. You serve as a middleman between the two so that a business is made.
- Ship Chandling– providing orders and requisitions for ships like spare parts and provisions.
- Shipping Agents– provide vessels with all the necessary documents and information in a certain port before, during, and after their port stay.
3) Maritime Education and Training– if you want to impart your knowledge and experience, you can teach in CHED and MARINA-accredited maritime schools or training centers in Luzon, Metro Manila, Visayas, or Mindanao.
4) Government– the government also needs talents and skills to best run its maritime sector including defense.
- Philippine Navy– task of protecting the sovereignty of our country within our territorial waters.
- Philippine Coast Guard (PCG)– performs maritime search and rescue, maritime law enforcement, maritime safety, marine environmental protection, and maritime security.
- Maritime Industry Authority– lately, MARINA is hiring seafarers who want to work with them.
Each of these professions may require additional training specific to the job. This is normal and is similar to working on merchant vessels.
The more you go up the rank in the shipboard organization, the more training courses you need to take.
Nautical and engineering graduates basically have the same career options. But the way I look at it, engineers have more opportunities due to their skills.
The list here is not exhaustive. Most of them have pay that doesn’t match that of on board. However, such career opportunities open you to different choices.
May the winds be in your favor.