Kingsborough Community College launched a new program where students get hands-on experience apprenticing at working boatyards as marine service technicians.
“We… look forward to deploying the next generation of highly trained and educated marine service technicians into the workforce,” said Kingsborough Community College President Claudia V. Schrader.
The new program focuses on producing technicians able to fill vacancies plaguing the nation’s marina industry, which lacks professionals skilled in the arts of boat repair and maintenance, according to the program director.
“The industry has a major deficiency in trained technicians and we started the apprenticeship program to address that need,” said John Nappa.
The Maritime Technology Apprenticeship Program at the Manhattan Beach community college offers student once-a-week classroom instruction and internships starting at $16 per hour for first-year students.
By the end of the apprenticeship program — which was made possible courtesy of a $857,000 state grant — students will have earned an associate degree in Maritime Technology and a Journeyman title from the state Department of Labor.
The apprentices will be provided MetroCards and food vouchers and have access to onsite academic support, food pantry, an urban farm and other resources offered at Kingsborough Community College and the state grant will allow many students to attend the school tuition-free.
“The number one issue I hear from employers across the state is that they can’t find workers with the skills they need for 21st-century jobs,” said Lieutenant Governor Kathy Hochul. “That is why we are investing $2.3 million in nine New York City-based job training programs that will benefit hundreds of New Yorkers as part of our historic $175 million Workforce Development Initiative. Whether it’s home care, the culinary arts or marine engineering, we are investing and working to close the skills gap and prepare New Yorkers for jobs today and in the future.”
A recent report issued by Center for an Urban Future and Tech:NYC earlier this month found that while Brooklyn had the second-most number of technical programs than any other borough in the city, those programs were spread unevenly — concentrated in northern Brooklyn neighborhoods and inadequate in southern Brooklyn neighborhoods which they claim further exacerbated the lack of diversity in the borough’s tech workforce.