05 December 2013

Reaction to the College bubble

Which is proceeding as Dr Glenn Reynold's has forseen. Reynolds also notes that there are some college majors which are well worth the time; effort; and expense. Here's one: Engineering. Here's an alternative:
The Engineering Candidate Hawsepipe (TECH) program is a comprehensive training program for selected high school graduates who want to pursue careers as seagoing marine engineers.
Is this for me?
Candidates must meet the United States Coast Guard (USCG) medical requirements for a licensed engineer, and demonstrate high standards of academic achievement and engineering aptitude.  Recruiting for the inaugural class is now complete and the next class convening date will be announced in due course.  Interested personnel should complete the registration form (link below) and we will contact you when the next class is scheduled.
There is a shortage of marine engineers. Why? Because there's a shortage of engineers. Almost all engineers. Degreed engineers from the maritme academies, therefore, have LOTS of alternatives.
A group of companies and a couple of maritime unions to the rescue:
American Maritime Officers (AMO), the largest union of US licensed merchant marine officers and the Seafarers International Union (SIU), the largest union of unlicensed mariners are working together on this project with the purpose of providing selected candidates with the opportunity to proceed on a marine engineering career path and help fill the current shortage of marine engineers.  The program targets high performing recent high school graduates with an interest in the merchant marine and mentors them during intense training onboard ship and ashore.
Nope, it's not a college, it's technical education
The TECH program will take approximately 2.5 to 3 years to complete and has nine (9) phases. The phases can be viewed here.
Here's the best news: you actually get paid by this program, tuition, room and board are free
Fees, compensation and benefits while in the TECH program.
There are no tuition or room and board fees for this program and all transportation costs incurred in completing the program are covered, provided the individual agrees to complete the program successfully and sail as a licensed engineer for AMO upon completion.
There are, however, limited fees to be paid by the candidate for the following (financial assistance may be available if required):
  • Medical and dental examinations associated with the application process and USCG physicals
  • TSA and USCG fees to obtain TWIC and USCG MMC
  • Uniform fees for initial phases of the program
  • Transportation costs to STAR Center (Ft. Lauderdale) for initial program orientation
  • Union dues as a member of Seafarers International Union and applicant candidate of AMO upon transition
While in the program TECH candidates will receive a limited stipend during certain shoreside training portions and all apprentice engineering assignments onboard ship. In addition, individual medical benefit coverage will be provided to the TECH candidate through the SIU and AMO
You have to sail for three years after graduating from the program. Is that a catch? Well, 3rd Assistant Engineers start off at $60 - $80,000 per year.

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