Posts Tagged ‘MATE’

An Ocean of Career Opportunities

Friday, May 20th, 2011


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!

Marine Science Programs – from North to South and East to West

Friday, November 19th, 2010


MATE – the Marine Advanced Technology Education Center – is headquartered at Monterey Peninsula College in Monterey, California. With the mission of increasing the size of the country’s marine technical workforce, MATE sponsors the annual ROV competition, which brings together students from around the country in a competition to construct remotely operated vehicles – underwater robots – an event that helps participants hone their technical skills and introduces them to the field of marine technology, as we learned in this week’s Episode.

In this week’s Episode, MATE Coordinator Jill Zande told ATETV, “The skills that students learn [as part of the ROV competition] can be applied in many different fields. They can become ROV engineers and pilots or they can choose to use their engineering and their technical skills to support other underwater technology platforms.”

Monterey Peninsula College is an obvious choice for an education in marine technology – students at the Northern California seaside campus can take a variety of classes – everything from Environmental Regulations to Research Diving and Safety – in their pursuit of either an A.S. degree or Certificate Program study in Marine Science and Technology.

But MATE’S Marine Science programs aren’t confined to California; colleges throughout the U.S. – North, South, East and West – provide a wide variety of aquatic programs for ocean-minded students. For example:

In the Northeast, Southern Maine Community College offers students an A.S. degree in Applied Marine Biology & Oceanography. Skills that can be learned through the curriculum – which emphasizes hands-on laboratory and field procedures – can be applied to careers in aquatic research and ecosystem management, with special attention given to collecting and identifying a diversity of marine organisms, conducting oceanographic sampling procedures aboard the school’s own research vessel, and microbiology and chemistry laboratory techniques.

Heading further down the East Coast, New York’s Kingsborough Community College is located on a 72-acre waterfront campus in Brooklyn, and offers a two year Associate in Applied Science (A.A.S.) degree in Marine Technology with a focus on vessel operations. Sample courses include Vessel Technology I and II, in which students are introduced to seamanship theory and the fundamentals of vessel handling through extensive on-board training, including piloting, operating rigging and deck machinery, as well as classes in Marine Electronics and Navigation. Students who have completed this program work in positions such as chief mate, captain, small engine mechanic, assistant manager of a marina, tug crew and mate on a private yacht.

Continuing the voyage south, the Marine Technology curriculum at Cape Fear Community College in Wilmington, North Carolina provides students with extensive shipboard experience and a hands-on approach to skills training from its location on the banks of the Cape Fear River. The curriculum prepares students to use and maintain electronic navigation devices, physical and chemical measuring instruments and sampling devices and Cape Fear graduates have gone on to positions in the U.S. Navy, the National Marine Fisheries Service and Lucent Technologies, among others.

Not surprisingly, a number of marine technology programs are based at Florida schools, including Florida Keys Community College where A.S. degrees are offered in Diving, Marine Environmental Technology and Marine Engineering. Located in Key West, FKCC’s program in Diving Business and Technology is especially popular, providing the education and diving core requirements needed for a career as a SCUBA instructor, a dive boat captain, a commercial diver, police diver or scientific research diver, as well as careers in dive medicine.

But, you don’t have to be on one of the coasts to take advantage of marine studies — there are numerous technical programs available in the center of the country for students who are interested in working in and around recreational boats. For example, at Tennessee’s Chattanooga State Technical Community College, a program in Motorcycle and Marine Service Technology provides students with academics in diagnostics and troubleshooting and maintenance of internal combustion engines and the other electrical and mechanical components necessary to the marine services industry. Similarly, at Iowa Lakes Community College, a curriculum in Marine Service Technology prepares students for careers at marinas, national marine corporations, marine manufacturers and personal watercraft dealerships.

Back on the West Coast, Northern Oregon’s Clatsop Community College maintains an active rapport with the U.S. Coast Guard and offers classes in its Maritime Science Department that include Marine Safety, Marine Licensing Programs, Navigation, Charts, Tides and Currents and Boat Handling as well as Marine Licensing Programs and Marine Electronics.

And finally, Saddleback College, located in Southern California’s Orange County offers students a certificate program in Aquarium and Aquaculture Science. Courses focus on the science of rearing and caring for marine and freshwater animals and the chemical, physical and biological environment of the aquarium ecosystems, and at the college’s 4,500-square-foot aquarium facility, students care for species such as corals, jellyfish, urchins, stars, perch and even sharks.

For more examples of Marine programs at colleges around the country, as well as career options available in the Marine industry, click here or check out BoatUS magazine’s comprehensive career guide, “2010-2011 Boat Lovers’ Guide to Marine Trade Schools.”

Ships ahoy!