Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 12 of 16

Thread: Maritime Schools vs geting my AB ticket on my own?

  1. #1
    Top Hook 55 is offline gCaptain Greenhorn
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    6
    Thanks
    4
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Default Maritime Schools vs geting my AB ticket on my own?

    Looking for some advice and will appreciate anybody's help.

    I spent almost 20 years working on the ocean in the fishing industry, on boats up to 57', even owning my own 55' for the last 4 of those years. I've spent the last few years working in the Middle East as a Government contractor, but this job is about to come to a close. I have a few friends that have left the fishing business and gone on to work tugs and crew boats, primarily in the GOM, due to the economy, regulations and such. They all got their AB ticket based on sea time and took the courses needed on their own time and dime. I would like to get into the industry also, and wondering what the benefits may be going through a school like SIU offers versus getting my AB the same way they did. I know there is no guarantee of employment either way, just wanted to get some opinions from people that have experience in this so I can make a more informed decision. I understand the apprentice program they offer is essentially an unpaid position while you go through it, I am fortunate enough to be in a position where I have enough money in savings to weather it out. Just wondering if it is worth it to burn through the savings or maybe try to get employment now and advance from there. I would like to work towards a QMED position in the future since I have a lot of past experience with the various mechanical systems on the boats I have worked on, but I am willing to start anywhere and work towards whatever goals I set for myself. I am not afraid of hard work or and have worked at least 12 hour days for years now with only 2 weeks off every 6 months. All opinions from both sides will be very appreciated. Thank you.
    Share on Facebook

  2. #2
    Clear Solution is offline gCaptain Crew
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Va Beach
    Posts
    161
    Thanks
    80
    Thanked 50 Times in 29 Posts

    Default

    From N. Carolina? Story sounds familiar..
    Share on Facebook

  3. #3
    workingirish's Avatar
    workingirish is offline gCaptain Crew
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    23
    Thanks
    14
    Thanked 14 Times in 6 Posts

    Default

    I believe that it is easier these days to start from the bottom and work your way up. There are companies out there that will pay for your schooling as long as you go on your off time. Doing that you can make money while advancing. Not sure about unions though. I don't have any experience with them but, I was advised to stay away from that deal.
    Share on Facebook

  4. #4
    NYBoatman's Avatar
    NYBoatman is online now gCaptain Crew
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    164
    Thanks
    22
    Thanked 68 Times in 35 Posts

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by workingirish
    I believe that it is easier these days to start from the bottom and work your way up. There are companies out there that will pay for your schooling as long as you go on your off time. Doing that you can make money while advancing. Not sure about unions though. I don't have any experience with them but, I was advised to stay away from that deal.
    Are you kidding me?!? Starting from the bottom is harder than ever nowadays. Not many companies are doing a training program.
    Share on Facebook

  5. The Following User Says Thank You to NYBoatman For This Useful Post:

    RubberRhib888 (January 21st, 2013)

  6. #5
    tugsailor is offline Top Contributer
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    2,638
    Thanks
    965
    Thanked 1,171 Times in 651 Posts

    Default Re: Maritime Schools vs geting my AB ticket on my own?

    Just pay a few hundred dollars to go to a one week school and get both AB and Master 100 tons. You can take the USCG test right at the school on the last day of class. Then go for another week and get BST. At that point you will be ready to go job hunting. Since you have sea time and experience running boats, it would be a waste of six months to go to the union school.
    Share on Facebook

  7. #6
    Fraqrat's Avatar
    Fraqrat is offline Top Contributer
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Alabama
    Posts
    1,641
    Thanks
    1,587
    Thanked 1,493 Times in 658 Posts

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by NYBoatman

    Are you kidding me?!? Starting from the bottom is harder than ever nowadays. Not many companies are doing a training program.
    Although it can be challenging to start at the bottom it can still be done. There are many companies that will pay for training from OS-Mate and Wiper-Engineer. Hornbeck, Chouest and even Turdwater all pay for training. I'm sure there are more. I have no idea how it works in the tug industry.
    Share on Facebook

  8. The Following User Says Thank You to Fraqrat For This Useful Post:

    Top Hook 55 (January 25th, 2013)

  9. #7
    Capt. Nemo's Avatar
    Capt. Nemo is offline Old Salt
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Virginia
    Posts
    286
    Thanks
    2
    Thanked 6 Times in 5 Posts

    Default Re: Maritime Schools vs geting my AB ticket on my own?

    Quote Originally Posted by NYBoatman View Post
    Are you kidding me?!? Starting from the bottom is harder than ever nowadays. Not many companies are doing a training program.
    That's funny. I have yet to find myself at the top without having started at the bottom! Starting at the top, or even halfway up, would be pretty cool but it's the climb that contributes, in large part, to one's ability to STAY on top. I've been aboard boats with Captains that haven't done enough climbing to occupy the "top" with competence or proficiency.
    That said, neither the AB nor the 100 Ton documents are difficult to obtain on your own. BST, however, will require some monetary output and formal training. Not a great deal, but some. From there it's presentation and persistance.
    Good luck,
    Nemo
    Share on Facebook

  10. The Following User Says Thank You to Capt. Nemo For This Useful Post:

    Top Hook 55 (January 25th, 2013)

  11. #8
    Top Hook 55 is offline gCaptain Greenhorn
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    6
    Thanks
    4
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Default Re: Maritime Schools vs geting my AB ticket on my own?

    Quote Originally Posted by tugsailor View Post
    Just pay a few hundred dollars to go to a one week school and get both AB and Master 100 tons. You can take the USCG test right at the school on the last day of class. Then go for another week and get BST. At that point you will be ready to go job hunting. Since you have sea time and experience running boats, it would be a waste of six months to go to the union school.
    ed
    Thanks tugsailor. While I know either way there will be plenty of courses I'll have to take as I go, I'd rather have a chance of earning while I'm learning. I've been out of the country for so long now and lost touch with a lot of people I used to know, but how is the job climate right now in the industry? While working somewhere that I'd have a chance to go home once a month or so is looking very appealing after all this time away, I'm not opposed to a deep sea job either if it means working and not burning money while I'm looking.
    Share on Facebook

  12. #9
    Top Hook 55 is offline gCaptain Greenhorn
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    6
    Thanks
    4
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Default Re: Maritime Schools vs geting my AB ticket on my own?

    Quote Originally Posted by Capt. Nemo View Post
    That's funny. I have yet to find myself at the top without having started at the bottom! Starting at the top, or even halfway up, would be pretty cool but it's the climb that contributes, in large part, to one's ability to STAY on top. I've been aboard boats with Captains that haven't done enough climbing to occupy the "top" with competence or proficiency.
    That said, neither the AB nor the 100 Ton documents are difficult to obtain on your own. BST, however, will require some monetary output and formal training. Not a great deal, but some. From there it's presentation and persistance.
    Good luck,
    Nemo
    I'm with you on that Capt. Nemo, when I was fishing I always preferred to work for a captain that knew what it was like to work my job first before taking the wheel. I've always started out at the bottom with everything I've done before so I'm used to it. What is life without challenges?
    Been looking at MAMA online, it's only about 3 hours from home and looks like they have every course I'd need to get all necessary documents. First things first, I have to get my TWIC, that requirement came up after I went to work overseas and the short times I've been home since weren't enough time to get it accomplished. It's amazing how disconnected all the Federal agencies are, I have a Top Secret security clearance from the Government but still have to have a background check done in order to get my TWIC. One day they might simplify all this, but I doubt it. Been out of the industry just long enough to forget how bad it can be dealing with all the CG regs, but I know I'm about to find out again real quick.
    Share on Facebook

  13. #10
    NYBoatman's Avatar
    NYBoatman is online now gCaptain Crew
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    164
    Thanks
    22
    Thanked 68 Times in 35 Posts

    Default

    Its a pain to do it on your own. With having to pay for the classes, flights and hotel while paying your mortgage and other bills it can be difficult. And also having to take off of work to take a class can hurt your pockets too. Now for me i paid for everything on my own. And im still paying cause im upgrading to get my 1600 ton. BUT it can be done and honestly sometimes doing it the this way can make you a better boatman.
    Goodluck Bro..
    Share on Facebook

  14. The Following User Says Thank You to NYBoatman For This Useful Post:

    Top Hook 55 (January 25th, 2013)

  15. #11
    Top Hook 55 is offline gCaptain Greenhorn
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    North Carolina
    Posts
    6
    Thanks
    4
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Default Re: Maritime Schools vs geting my AB ticket on my own?

    Thanks for all the useful insight. As soon as I get back to the States I'm jumping right on getting everything renewed, upgraded and taking the AB course at MAMA. Hopefully there are companies looking for deckhands this spring/summer. This has been a good ride, but I'm tired of the desert and ready to get back on the water again. I miss the salt air.
    Everybody have a great day.
    Share on Facebook

  16. #12
    tugsailor is offline Top Contributer
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    2,638
    Thanks
    965
    Thanked 1,171 Times in 651 Posts

    Default Re: Maritime Schools vs geting my AB ticket on my own?

    Your security clearance will be very valuable during your job search. I suspect that you probably have many skills and contacts that will be helpful during your job search. TWIC is mess right now. I suggest that you apply for your TWIC and MMC ASAP. While you are waiting you can spend two to four weeks in school to get the BST, AB and 100 ton master classes done. Where to go to school depends on where you live or want to spend time in school. There are plenty of schools with courses at that level.
    Share on Facebook

  17. The Following User Says Thank You to tugsailor For This Useful Post:

    Top Hook 55 (January 25th, 2013)

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •