Mercury Marine and its training division, Mercury University, announced a partnership with Great Lakes Boat Building School in Cedarville, Mich., to offer students a 12‑month, 42‑credit‑hour Mercury Marine Maintenance Program beginning with the fall 2020 semester.
Mercury and the school announced their partnership at a special ceremony sponsored by the school and the Michigan Boating Industries Association at the Progressive Detroit Boat Show.
“Michigan is the third‑largest marine market in the country and, with nearly one million registered boats on file in our Great Lakes State, we estimate nearly 50 percent of our citizens take to the water each year to boat and fish,” said Nicki Polan, executive director, Michigan Boating Industries. “We are extremely excited for the Mercury and GLBBS partnership, and are honored to join in the support to bring educational opportunities to Michigan. Our industry has a $7.8 billion economic impact on the state’s economy each year and we need qualified marine technicians to keep it going and growing.”
Jeff Mason, CEO of the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, expressed enthusiasm about the career prospects that the program will offer students. “Congratulations to the Great Lakes Boat Building School for its innovative partnership with Mercury Marine to establish the region’s first marine industry training program, which will create greater access to a range of high‑skilled and pathway jobs throughout the state,” Mason said. “Today’s announcement further builds on the state’s legacy of innovation by partnering with the industry’s top‑ranked manufacturer to train the next generation of marine service technicians from right here in the Great Lakes State.”
Upon completion of the course — which includes extensive hands‑on training on equipment supplied by Mercury, as well as applicable M‑TEK courses (Mercury’s on‑line Marine Technician’s Essential Knowledge E‑Skills programs) — the students will receive a Mercury Maintenance Certificate, demonstrating their successful completion of the course and their familiarity with Mercury’s maintenance procedures and engines. The work completed will count toward becoming a certified Mercury technician, once the student is employed by a Mercury dealer.
“We have a large number of dealers in the Great Lakes Region who are looking to hire qualified technicians,” said Nick Van Nocker, training technology manager, Mercury University. “This partnership allows us to focus on providing qualified marine technicians for this area of the country. It benefits our dealers and our customers, all of whom are getting better‑trained technicians.”
“We are excited about the opportunity to partner with Mercury, which will further advantage our students as we strive to provide the best education available to the industry,” said Joseph D. Reid, chairman of the board, Great Lakes Boat Building School.
“Dealers can hire someone with this certificate knowing they are hiring someone who can immediately contribute to the dealership, know their way around Mercury products and are already partway towards being certified,” Van Nocker added.