Maritime Scholarships for College Students in the Philippines

by | Last updated May 9, 2024 | Career Guide, Scholarships | 6 comments

Maritime scholarships are the best and surest way to start a career at sea. 

With more and more people entering the seafaring industry, it’s very hard for an average Joe with no backer to land his first international vessel. 

It would take him many years of hardships, disappointments, and pain. Not to mention the expenses that he must shed before becoming a true seaman.

However, students with scholarship programs are able to bypass these rigorous processes. 

They won’t have to shed tears and sweat to apply for a company since the shipping agency will be the one looking for them. 

All they have to do is study very hard during their academic years. This is very important. Their company is grooming them to a path of becoming a competent officer or engineer.

1. NSA Philippines Cadet Program

The Norwegian Shipowners’ Association (NSA) Cadet Program is the most prestigious scholarship here in the Philippines. 

They have been producing top-notch cadets since February 1990, and most of them are in the highest ranks already.

It is a fully sponsored scholarship program for selected young and qualified Filipinos managed by the Norwegian Training Center- Manila or NTC-M. 

Over the years, NTC-M has led the training industry in the Philippines in excellence and innovation and provided first-class simulator training and assessment programs.

NSA Philippines Cadet Program is now accepting applicants
NSA Philippines Cadet Program is now accepting applicants.

Out of the 7,641 islands, the project only has three accredited maritime academies. These are the following:

  • University of Cebu Lapu-Lapu and Mandaue (UCLM)
  • DMMA College of Southern Philippines (DCSP
  • Lyceum of the Philippines University – Batangas Campus 

You have to fill out and submit a form on the NTC website as your first step in the application process. Here are more detailed steps for joining the NSA scholarship program.

2. IMEC Maritime Education Program

The International Maritime Employers’ Council (IMEC) started its scholarship program in the Philippines way back in 2006. 

It’s a response to the growing number of ships but with less competent and quality officers.

Like the NSA Cadetship Program, IMEC Scholars also enjoy free tuition fees, uniforms, board and lodging, and meals during their academic studies. 

In their 4th year, they will go for a 12-month apprenticeship on board as an engine or deck cadet so they can take the MARINA Licensure exam on track to become an officer or engineer. Take note that during their apprenticeship period, they will earn real dollars as much as USD800.00 every month just like the NSA Cadets.

To avail of the scholarship, you must register in their candidate portal for quick and easy access to your results.

IMEC trains its scholars through quality education, funding the upgrading of classrooms and learning materials, as well as continued professional development for lecturers and teaching staff. 

This ensures that cadets receive the best possible training during their stay at school.

3. MAAP Scholarship Grants

Maritime Academy of Asia and the Pacific (MAAP) is the academic arm of the Associated Marine Officers and Seaman’s Union of the Philippines (AMOSUP). 

Both AMOSUP and MAAP were established by Capt. Gregorio S. Oca is a world-class maritime education and training facility in the world.

Today, that vision is coming into reality. MAAP cadets are some of the top notchers in licensure exams. They continually upgrade their learning centers for the full benefit of the cadets.

Maritime Academy of Asia and the Pacific
Maritime Academy of Asia and the Pacific

MAAP also offers scholarship programs for both male and female applicants with a GPA of 83%. Like other scholarship programs, cadets are groomed to become the best in their field.

On top of the scholarship grant, they will undergo personality, character, and leadership development through physical fitness, emotional literacy, NROTC, and varied extracurricular activities.

Application Procedures

  1. Get MAAP scholarship application forms from any of the testing/filing centers, Naval ROTC units, or PCG stations nationwide
  2. Submit duly accomplished application form with the requirements to designated filing centers either by mail or in person
  3. Receive admission slips either by mail or in person.

4. Philippine Merchant Marine Academy (PMMA)

If you’re looking for a state-sponsored maritime academy, PMMA is your best choice. 

In fact, it’s the only nautical school funded and operated by the Philippine government under the supervision of the Commission on Higher Education (CHED). 

PMMA follows a rigid seniority system where cadets are trained in a semi-military environment throughout their academic years. 

This type of system ensures their survival in the harsh environment on board international vessels. Leadership, camaraderie, discipline, and character are fully instilled in the program.

Because of the top-notch training of their school, PMMA cadets are among the number one choice of shipping agencies abroad. 

Upon graduation, they have the option to start a career in the maritime industry or sign up for active military duty either in the Philippine Navy or the Philippine Coast Guard.

To join the scholarship, applicants must register and fill up an application form online and choose the testing center nearest you.

More information about their admission process can be found on their website.

5. University of Cebu (UC) Maritime Scholarship

As one of the best maritime schools in the country, the University of Cebu offers affordable and quality education responsive to the demands of local and international communities. 

Out of their four campuses, two of them offer maritime degrees- the Lapu-Lapu and Mandaue Campus (UCLM) and the Maritime Education and Training Center Campus (UC-METC) in Mambaling, Cebu.

The school has partnered with local and international shipping companies in providing world-class maritime cadets that would man their fleet in the future.

Three of the largest maritime scholarship providers- the NSA, IMEC, and Inter-orient Navigation Corporation (INC) conduct yearly applications of deserving cadets in the school. 

Fresh graduates from UC taking an oath during their graduation.
Image: University of Cebu – METC.

Those who pass are hired directly after graduation while enjoying the scholarship benefits.

That’s not all. UC has also forged connections with European, Japanese, American, Korean, and Indian shipping agencies.

You can get the full details about their scholarship grants by visiting their website. 

Additionally, you can raise your inquiries by visiting or calling their human resource management team using the information below.

Dr. Leonilo B. Oliva, Ph.D., DM – HRM

Director, Office of Scholarship

University of Cebu

Sanciangko St., Cebu City


  • Tel. No.: (032) 255 – 7777 loc. 156
  • Fax. No.: (032) 253 – 0729 / ( 032 ) 254 – 3287

7. “K” Line Scholarships Program

This scholarship program was established by a renowned Japanese shipping agency named “K” Line. 

Like most scholarships, they provide financial assistance to deserving Filipino students who want to pursue maritime-related courses.

“K” Line has different scholarship programs that deserving students can choose from like the ones below.

“K” Line Scholarship (KS) Program

Grants scholarships to deserving BSMT and BSMarE students from four accredited maritime schools involved in this program.

These schools are:

  • PMMA: Philippine Merchant Marine Academy 
  • JBLFMU: John B. Lacson Foundation Maritime University
  • UC-METC: University of Cebu – Maritime Education and Training Center
  • LIMA: Lyceum International Maritime Academy

“K” Line Mechanical Engineering + Marine Engineering Bridging Program (ME+)

A six-month bridging program where they train mechanical engineers to become qualified marine engineers.

This was in response to the growing shortage of competent marine engineers in their fleet.

Selected applicants will study at VMA Global College which is their accredited school for the bridging program.

“K” Line Maritime Education Scholarship Program (MESP )

This program is conducted nationwide.

“K” Line Maritime Academy (KLMA) Philippines conducts a nationwide selection of students for their  “K” Line MESP scholarship.

These students will come from different accredited maritime schools in the Philippines.

Upon passing, they will enroll in Cristal e-College in Bohol to complete their BS Marine Engineering or BS Marine Transportation courses.

"K" Line Bridging Program Scholarship for mechanical engineers who want to transition to marine engineers.

8. Other International Shipping Companies

We just tackled well-known companies and their scholarship programs in some chosen institutions. 

Aside from them, other foreign shipping agencies also want to invest a future of their manpower in our country.

So even if you fail in the big leagues, watch out for these companies coming to your school. Here are just a few of them.

  • AGFI
  • Mitsui O.S.K. Lines
  • Dalisay Shipping
  • Jubar Shipping Corp.
  • MECO
  • Palompon Institute Technology
  • Great Southern Maritime Services Corporation
  • EL BURG Ship Management Phils, Inc.
  • CAREER Philippines Ship Management, INC.
  • PTC
  • POMI
  • WALLEM Philippines

9. Your Nearest College

As we mentioned above, these agencies do not limit their search to those schools. Some of them go to other colleges from around the country to find deserving students. 

They conduct examinations and eventually sponsor cadets who top their assessments.

You should try visiting your nearest maritime college and ask if shipping companies regularly visit them as well as any scholarship grants offered.

Being part of a scholarship program provides many benefits. The company will shoulder most of your school fees. 

You are guaranteed 100% sure-fire employment after graduation. This means you will enjoy earning the real salary of a seaman at a very young age.

Other than that, the promotion will also be waiting for you once you pass the licensure examination. It’s a win-win program for deserving students without any favoritism or bias. 

The application does not discriminate whether you are rich, poor, or whatever walks of life you come from as long as you are qualified.

May the winds be in your favor.



  1. Anonymous

    The palompon institute of technology is one of the accredited partner schools for NSA?

    • Gibi

      Hello. There are only three schools the NSA scholarship partners with:
      University of Cebu – Lapu-Lapu and Mandaue (UCLM)
      Davao Merchant Marine Academy (DMMA) – College of Southern Philippine
      Lyceum of the Philippines University – Batangas Campus

  2. Anonymous

    I currently living at Cebu right now, if I were able to pass the NSA Scholarships program, will I be stationed/transferred to LPU/DMMA? Or will I be stationed at UCLM?

    • Gibi

      Good day. It depends on the company that’s assigned to you. Good luck and I hope you qualify for the scholarship program.

  3. Anonymous

    Is there a company scholarship in UC,school year 2024-225? Thank you

    • Gibi

      You can apply for the NSA Scholarships program where UC is one of the accredited partner schools. Scholars will be assigned to their shipping companies as early as their academic years.


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