An Ocean of Career Opportunities


Did you know that 20 percent of our economy is based on ocean-related activities?

There are well-known sea-faring ventures — fisheries and aquaculture, transportation, and recreation and tourism. But there are plenty of less obvious areas that also rely on the ocean, everything from energy and exploration activities, to national security and defense, to telecommunications, search and recovery operations and scientific and medical research.

If you’re curious to explore this sea of opportunities, check out According to Deidre Sullivan, Project Director at the Marine Advanced Technology Education (MATE) Center at Monterey Peninsula College in Monterey, California, it’s a one-stop web site for anyone who’s interested in learning more about ocean occupations.

“When we first created the web site, in 2004, there was almost nothing out there for [students and job-hunters] in terms of ocean-career resources,” Deidre tells us. “OceanCareers provides four comprehensive databases with hundreds upon hundreds of resources.”

Whether your primary interest is to find a job or internship, or to understand what type of educational programs are available in marine science and technology, you’ll find it here. The first database provides detailed information on the more than 300 educational institutions around the country that offer ocean-related academic programs; the second offers descriptions of more than 50 ocean occupations, including overviews of the positions’ tasks and duties, the salary ranges and workforce trends; the third is a full overview of educational competencies needed in 24 different disciplines to be able to get a job; and the fourth provides users with links to more than 200 ocean-related professional societies.

“Students from all over the country use OceanCareers,” ( says Deidre. “We’ve found that people really go through a lot of the information on the site. It’s easy to navigate, you can get anywhere in the site with just two clicks. It’s been rewarding to have people tell me that it’s the most important tool they’ve used [in their search for career information].”

What are users most often looking for in their searches? “Not surprisingly, people want to know much education they need for a particular career and how much salary they can earn in a particular field,” she says, adding that all content is frequently updated and kept current. (The MATE team has also put together a print version of the site’s educational content, “The Guide to Marine Science and Technology Programs in Higher Education.” You can download it at, or can order a copy for $5.)

Take a look!

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