6 thoughts on “Joining at 32?

  • May 23, 2020 at 8:27 pm
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    32 is not to old to start out. But I think being color blind will disqualify you from getting a merchant mariners credential. Maybe you can get a waiver for it but I doubt it.

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  • May 23, 2020 at 8:27 pm
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    32 years, nah. I joined at 29. Best decision of my life.

    As far as colorblind, well, that I can’t answer.

    When it comes to the maritime industry. Where do you want to be?

    Ocean rigs? Cruise ships? Tugs on the river system?

    Each have their own progression.

    Lastly, once you figure out what path you want to follow.
    You have two options to approach the path. Hauspiping or by academy. Aka school vs years of trial and error and growth from the bottom up.

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  • May 23, 2020 at 8:27 pm
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    I don’t think you can get any sort of license if you’re colorblind. I don’t know what that means for working as a Stewart or in the engine room. Google USCG license requirements and I’m sure you can find more information. I’m no expert but I have been working since I graduated Ft. Schuyler in 2013.

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  • May 23, 2020 at 8:27 pm
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    It’s not too late, and colorblindness will likely mean you can only work as an engineer.

    Do you fail every type of colorblindness test?

    What kind of vessels do you want to work on? Do you want to get a license and be an officer?

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  • May 23, 2020 at 8:27 pm
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    I believe colorblindness will limit you to the engine department. Someone please correct me if I am wrong. Age isn’t really a factor unless you want to go through one of the undergrad martime colleges, but even then only USMMA has a maximum acceptance age.

    If you just want to get out to sea there is the SIU which has training programs to get unlicensed ratings and experience/jobs. They will get you training and education and help you learn the ropes in the union. You can also try and find oil-field jobs where you can do similar work and get trained by the people on the ship, which can be a pretty mixed bag depending on who you work with. I had a bunch of brand new unlicensed guys on a ship I worked on and I loved teaching them how to do stuff, but not everyone does (or is good at it). Generally speaking unlicensed folks will be doing a lot of the harder more labor intensive tasks (ie cleaning, chipping paint, painting, helping licensed engineers when needed). If you want to become an officer you can do it this way, but it takes a huge amount of sea time and costs about as much as going through a maritime program.

    If you have interest in grad school and/or becoming an officer schools like SUNY Maritime and likely the other state maritime colleges offer masters degrees that also support getting a license. Personally I think these are really cool programs as it puts you in a position to get some experience on ships and you have solid career options if you decide in the longer term that it’s not for you. You also graduate as an officer, which puts you at a pretty decent income level and it’s much easier to advance than when you are starting out as an unlicensed person. The downside here is if you have any personal financial obligations or dependents.

    Clearly we are a welcoming bunch and happy to answer questions.

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  • May 23, 2020 at 8:27 pm
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    I started when I was 27. Coming from IT. Having different backgrounds can be helpful at some times.

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