HAVERHILL – Whittier Regional Vocational Technical High School recently graduated 12 students from its first Marine Technology Adult Education program.
On July 19, a dozen students completed the course and passed the Yamaha Certificate test, earning an Introductory Outboard Systems Certificate.
Whittier Tech officials said that by completing the program, students are now ready to pursue entry-level careers in the marine industry.
“This is the first time that Whitter Tech has had an evening marine technology program and we have a fantastic group of students and a great instructor,” said Whittier Superintendent Maureen Lynch. “I would like to congratulate all the students for completing this rigorous course. I have no doubts that they have all developed the crucial skills needed to enter the workforce.”
Students participated in 80 hours of classroom instruction. The program focused on theory and skill development, but students also participated in hands-on work on various outboard motors.
The Massachusetts Marine Trades Association (MMTA) donated $ 400 toward each student’s tuition fee, with help from state funding, offsetting the typical course fee of $ 900.
In addition, the Baker-Polito administration recently allocated $ 150,000 in 2022 state budget funding for workforce development and vocational technical training initiatives in the recreational boating industry. . This funding will continue to support MMTA as the organization strives to address workforce challenges.
According to the National Marine Manufacturers Association, the Massachusetts boating industry has an economic impact of $ 4.4 billion and employs more than 20,000 men and women in Massachusetts. However, there is a significant labor shortage in the industry, both in Massachusetts and nationally.
Whitter Tech plans to offer a similar program in the fall for unemployed and underemployed people who wish to embark on a career in marine technology.