EDGEWATER, Md. - The first face-to-face meeting in the history of the Marine Industry Technical Council took place at October's International BoatBuilders' Exhibition & Conference in Miami.
MITEC has set for itself and began working it's way through an ambitious schedule.
The council has now established a mission statement and confirmed the election of several officers including: chair, Ed Boncek, director of Dealer Channel Management Systems, Sea Ray Boats; vice chair, Joe DeMarco, president, Association of Marine Technicians; and secretary, Skip Burdon, president, American Boat and Yacht Council.
MITEC has also created interim by-laws and established divisions and working committees to accomplish specific projects or programs that will help find solutions to the marine industry's shortage of producing and sustaining a technically proficient marine workforce for the 21st century. Those divisions include:
Working committees under each division have been established and will be populated by industry and educational institution representatives over the next few months. MITEC's goal is to have the committees fully populated by the conclusion of the second annual Conference On Marine Industry Technical Training, which is scheduled to be held Jan. 23-24 in Safety Harbor, Fla.
“MITEC has a unique opportunity to address a weakness in the recreational marine industry,” said Ed Boncek, MITEC chair. “We are fortunate in the timing of our endeavor as great strides have been made in pulling the industry together under the umbrella of the Grow Boating Initiative. Now we must look at also pulling together to grow our technician workforce.”
Boncek said that MITEC must remain focused on its mission, which he said was, “To facilitate the creation and sustained availability of a technically skilled and proficient labor force for the marine industry through education, training and professional development. The supporting mission of the council is to promote public awareness and appreciation of technical workforce career opportunities within the marine industry.”
Joe DeMarco, MITEC vice-chair said he is encouraged by the commitment, energy and dedication of the MITEC members.
“MITEC should be proud of what they've accomplished just in a few meetings, and I am looking forward to working with the various committees to accomplish the goals of MITEC, which will eventually lead to improving career opportunities for all technicians,” he said.
MITEC will be administratively and financially supported by ABYC and through contributions made by industry organizations and individuals to the ABYC Foundation for the immediate future. Long-term plans, however, call for to ultimately form its own not-for-profit organization.
MITEC grew out of the first COMITT meetings, held earlier this year. The organizers of those meetings - ABYC, the National Marine Manufacturers Association and Professional BoatBuilder magazine - said the most important outcome of COMITT was the formation of MITEC.
The 23-member council was tasked with developing an industry-wide approach to the voluntary, consensus-based tracking, management, accreditation and certification of marine workforce technical education and training programs. Upon its creation, MITEC immediately began holding a series of conference calls to organize and develop by-laws and a concept of structure and operation.
COMITT will continue to serve as the industry's conference of choice for gathering industry representatives and educators together to discuss and debate current and future marine industry technical education and training needs.
MITEC will attempt to catalog all marine industry technical education and training being offered in North America; provide a coordinating entity for those industry and educational organizations desiring to participate in this voluntary, consensus-based program; set recommended and voluntary guidelines for marine technical workforce training and certification, which could later develop into industry-accepted standards; develop criteria for and assign continuing marine educational credits to technical courses (outcome based examination or performance-based demonstration of minimum required skill sets) offered by participating organizations; develop criteria for and assign of continuing marine educational units for approved events (seminars, workshops, conferences, exhibitions, professional reading, etc.); and, coordinate and maintain an automated, electronic database management system to provide essential educational record keeping, certificate production and transcripts for workforce personnel who volunteer to participate in the program.
The theme for COMITT '06 is “Resources for Success.” Visit www.abycinc.org and click on the COMITT logo for registration information and program updates.
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