Become a Ship Captain: Education Requirements and Career Overview

Career pursuit for ship captain entails certain things you will be doing yourself some good getting your hands on before taking any step. Consider these things as dots which if you can connect will set you on the right career path.

If you are going to be a ship captain, you have to know what roles come with that. As a captain, you oversee the overall operation of vessels. You are going to be working with every crew onboard- get them to do their job well to keep the vessels running in full swings.

You will be putting in place safety measures and enforcing it to make sure every department operates by it. You oversee the maintenance, repair and upgrade of mechanical and electrical equipment. You have to tailor your safety measures for preventing hazards or any activity that will result in potential risks.

To become a ship captain, there’s career path to follow and the path involves career progression- meaning that you go from one level to another. In other words, you have to have some level of education, work in related profiles to gain significant experience in running and maintaining vessels.

Career requisites:

A four-year degree program in fields such as nautical sciences, marine engineering, naval engineering, marine transportation, shipyard management, marine operations and technology, intermodal transportation and similar courses, is the number one of the primary requisites for a ship captain career pursuit.

You are required to have skills in IT- specifically, management of navigation software, repairing and maintenance of electrical and mechanical parts of engines. Strong control of grammar and medical fitness are added advantages.

These skills, for the most part, come from operating, managing and maintaining vessels. That said, to become a captain, you have to have at least three to four-year experience in shipyard management, technology and operation.

As mentioned earlier, the career path to becoming a ship captain requires you to progress from level to another. At every level you gain some experience, take tests and if you pass, proceed to the next level.

There are few entry points into the career. Each defines where you can begin your career. The right right entry level for you is factored by your level of education, experience and career aspiration.

You can start as a third mate or deck officers if you have obtained a bachelor’s degree in any of the fields highlighted earlier. This shortens your journey because as a graduate, you are not required to undergo hands-on training plus get experience to qualify for the position of a deckhand. There however ever still further levels to cross to get to the position of a ship captain.

Sequel to obtaining a bachelor’s degree in naval architecture or marine engineering, you can go for a graduate marine engineering course- a one-year hands-on training to elevate your profiles and qualify for positions higher than that of a deckhand. It confers the certificate of competency on you.

Awarded by the India Ministry of shipping, certificate of competency elevates you to the level of Class iv marine engineer officer which means technically you are qualified for the position of marine engineer onboard.

In conclusion, it not far-fetched that having marine education facilitates career progression to the captain of a ship. For that, you may want to go for a degree and gme course in India to acquire skills that will elevate you to the top of your career.

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