On March 31, 2020, the American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC), the nonprofit organization that provides standards-based technical education for the marine industry, hosted its first interactive online education course in response to the COVID pandemic. Exactly one year later, 1,100 students have passed online courses to earn their professional-level ABYC certification. Additionally, 54 marine technicians have become ABYC Master Technicians, which is achieved by earning three or more certifications.
“The marine industry has embraced online learning, with attendance exceeding all expectations for interactive certification courses, webinars and virtual seminars,” said Casey Bates, ABYC certification manager. “We congratulate all the new ABYC certified technicians and advisors who committed to their continuing education over this past year.”
ABYC certification courses have historically been held in person, but a year ago, with new social distancing concerns, plans were fast-forwarded to provide online opportunities. The format of 90-minute live online sessions with an instructor allows marine technicians to juggle their schedule and attend without traveling. As a result, certification courses sold out quickly, with attendees from 12 countries and a higher pass rate.
Mark Goodwin, service manager at Spar Yard Marine Solutions, recently earned his ABYC Marine Electrical Certification. Goodwin commented on his experience stating, “I enjoyed the online certification course, and although it would have been nice to be in person, this really is the best option given the current situation in the world. I found that having the downtime between classes gave us time to digest the information as opposed to three intense days where you have a lot to cram into your brain.”
ABYC certifications include marine electrical, advanced electrical, marine systems, marine corrosion, diesel engines, gasoline engines, marine composites, A/C refrigeration and ABYC standards.
Looking forward, ABYC intends to present both online and in person classes. To learn more about ABYC’s certification program and view upcoming classes visit www.abycinc.org.