BOSTON – The Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology (BFIT) has created a marine studies program, which was kicked off with 11 students this past September, the Massachusetts Marine Trades Association (MMTA) reported in a joint statement with the Boston-based college.
The one-year BFIT Marine Studies program, whose students come from throughout Massachusetts as well as Connecticut and Florida, includes instruction in engineering principles, focusing on electricity, marine engines and propulsion systems, rigging, and environmental and safety practices. Math, science and communication fundamentals are incorporated into the program studies as well. Following class-room and field instruction, students enjoy a paid summer internship at a marine facility.
Graduates with a Certificate in Marine Technology may find employment at marinas, boatyards, dealerships, manufacturers, and specialty shops throughout the coastal, lakefront and riverside communities of the Northeast, the association said.
Recent estimates conclude that the Massachusetts marine trades industry has a need to hire 5,000 additional employees within the next decade, the majority of which will be sought to fill marine technician positions, the association reported.
Common misconceptions about the marine trades are that jobs are seasonal, part time, low paying and mostly located in expensive waterfront communities, according to MMTA. But a recent workforce study revealed that nearly 70 percent of all positions are year round and full time. Technicians earn an average of $15 to $20 hourly with many overtime opportunities. The number of inland marine businesses is also expected to rise as waterfront real estate prices remain unattainable for many, the association reported.
“Educational opportunities are key to maintaining and growing the Massachusetts recreational marine trades,” stated Ed Lofgren, MMTA director, MMTET trustee and BFIT staff instructor.
More information about the BFIT Marine Studies program can be found at www.bfit.edu.
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