Maitais Rodgers, marine technician at Apopka Marine, recently completed the Yamaha Marine Apprentice Program (YMAP) offered through Yamaha Marine University (YMU). YMAP helps marine dealers combat the current shortage of marine technicians by fostering qualified new technician careers. The program includes 4,000 hours of technician training supported by an online platform.
“The program at Apopka is a perfect example of how Yamaha is leading the charge to help proactively combat the shortage of marine technicians,” said Gregg Snyder, Marine Training Department Manager, Yamaha U.S. Marine Business Unit. “Grooming technicians from the ground up through tech schools, apprentice programs and ongoing training is a proven formula that works for many dealerships.”
YMAP pairs experienced mentors in dealership service departments with novice technicians to help them learn the key skills they need to further develop their careers in the marine industry. Apopka Marine Service Manager and Master Technician Greg Hughes served as Rogers’ mentor during the program, which includes hands-on Yamaha outboard technician training covering maintenance, outboard rigging, trailers, outboard fuel systems, outboard powerhead components and operation, outboard lower units, outboard trim and tilt units, outboard electrical systems and troubleshooting.
“Maitais came to us with minimum experience in the marine service industry,” said Apopka Marine owner Joe Bega. “He was detailing boats when I approached him about becoming a technician. Our industry has a severe shortage of qualified technicians and the YMAP program seemed like a perfect fit.”
Maitais’s goals for his future include achieving additional certifications, ultimately earning his Master Technician certification.