Marine Watercraft Repair and Maintenance
Marine watercraft repair and maintenance workers are trained on the job or through formal education to work on complex watercraft engines and systems. If you're interested in becoming a marine watercraft technician, read on to learn more about training and career options.
Inside Marine Watercraft Repair and Maintenance
Watercraft engines are being built with increasing complexity, and repairs require highly qualified technicians with good technical skills. Marine watercraft repair and maintenance programs teach individuals how to work with boats, jet-skis and other watercraft. Students learn how to recognize and repair problems that may adversely affect watercraft function and safety.
Hands-on training is a major component of these programs, although many employers prefer applicants with some formal training. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), more marine equipment mechanics are completing formal postsecondary training programs (www.bls.gov). The BLS reported it can take anywhere from a few months to three years of on-the-job training, schooling or a combination of both to become a fully qualified motorboat repair and maintenance technician.
Training programs are offered through community colleges, vocational schools and postsecondary trade schools. Students learn how to repair various components of marine watercraft, including inboard engines, propulsion systems, electrical systems, structural components and mechanical systems. Courses may cover safety tools, boat designs, fuel systems, marine electronics and marine drive trains. Most programs incorporate hands-on training through shop courses or cooperative work programs.
Marine watercraft repair and maintenance technicians may work for boat and motor dealerships, boat repair shops, charter companies or be self-employed. Job titles include marine watercraft technician, boat and motor rigger, marine mechanic or shop assistant. Certification is offered through professional organizations such as the American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC). The ABYC Certified Technician credential is awarded to experienced professionals who complete eight courses and pass a national certifying exam, and the ABYC Master Technician is available to those with less work experience who pass at least three courses (www.abycinc.org).
The BLS anticipated faster-than-average job growth for motorboat mechanics, at 21%, between 2010 and 2020. This growth is largely due to increasingly complex boat engines boosting demand for qualified repair technicians. The BLS expected those with formal training to have better job prospects overall. As of May 2011, the median annual salary of motorboat mechanics and service technicians was $35,520.
Learn More About Marine Watercraft Repair and Maintenance
Formal training programs in marine watercraft repair and maintenance may provide students with the necessary skills for entry-level employment in the field. If you'd like to learn more about these programs, Education-Portal.com offers information about education and career options in this field.
Degree and Diploma Options
Most formal training programs lead to an associate's degree, certificate or diploma program. You can learn more about these programs using the links below.
- Associate's Degree in Marine Technology and Systems
- Associate of Science in Watercraft Fabrication and Repair
- Degree and Certificate Programs in Marine Technology
- Marine Technician Diploma
- Schools with Marine Watercraft Repair and Maintenance Programs
Individuals with the requisite training in marine watercraft repair and maintenance may qualify for entry-level repair and maintenance jobs in the marine industry. With experience, these technicians may become managers of marine watercraft repair shops or supply stores.
- Personal Watercraft Marine Technician
- Marine Maintenance Technician
- Boat Maintenance Technician
- Recreational Boat Mechanic
- Ship Carpenter
Distance Learning Options
Due to the hands-on nature of marine watercraft repair and maintenance training, online programs are rare. But individuals may find online certificate programs in marine technology. Courses designed for marine mechanics are also available online.
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