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YEAR OF GRADUATION
Know Employer (surveyed)
Mon-Maritime: Student, Gov't, etc.
Ir. Navy or Coast Guard
In Merchant Marine
for physical reasons)
0.9 9.6 89.0
1.0 20.0 78.5
NOTE: Figures are based on graduate records on file in the Alicant office of the US, avented by dole supplied by the Mary Bureau of Personel and the Marchant Vessel Pers.tel Dccuentation 3 tacords arch of the V.S. Coast Evand
Survey of these records mos In Decador 1930,
Mr. DOWNING. This will conclude the hearing on these bills and the record will remain open for 10 days to receive additional material. (The following material was supplied for the record :)
NOVEMBER 24, 1969. Hon. ANDREW E. GIBSON, Maritime Administrator, the Maritime Administration, Department of Commerce, Washington, D.C.
DEAR MR. GIBSON : As you will recall, the Special Subcommittee on Maritime Education and Training held hearings October 21, 22 and 23, 1969 on H.R. 8785 (Mr. Hathaway) and H.R. 8328 (Mr. Keith), and related matters.
On October 21, Robert W. Blackwell, Deputy Maritime Administrator, testified before the Special Subcommittee on behalf of the Maritime Administration, opposing both bills for fiscal reasons, on the question of lack of need, and because a high percentage of maritime school graduates apparently do serve. In the course of his testimony, Mr. Blackwell commented on the necessity of the Maritime Administration doing some behavioral studies on the proper type of seagoing environment as well as studies to aid in the forecasting of future seamen needs.
The Special Subcommittee, as a result of its deliberations, has reached the conclusion that further information and analysis concerning this complicated maritime school problem is necessary before the Special Subcommittee and the Full Committee can move forward legislatively in this area. For this reason, we request that the Maritime Administration provide us with an objective, comprehensive report supplemental to its testimony before the Subcommittee and supplemental to the subject bills, not later than January 15, 1970.
In view of the complexities of this problem and the controversy which has permeated it over the years, we think it is both timely and necessary for the Maritime Administration to undertake an exhaustive, in-depth study and report reviewing the entire maritime training program. The study should focus on what a financial increase for these schools would be for, and the need for such an increase. In addition, contemplate that this report, among other things, should inquire into the merits of the program, past and present; the extent and nature of Federal participation vis-a-vis state participation, as well as the participation of the union schools; service in the merchant marine and Armed Forces over the last 20 years by the graduates of all maritime schools; what the future holds, especially with respect to the new maritime policy and program proposed by the Administration and the future with respect to oceanography; possible relationship of maritime training and education to the Sea Grant College program; possibilities of financing maritime training through a percentage of the rerenues from Continental Shelf operations; and whatever else may be necessary to give the Congress guidance and assistance in the formulation of legislation.
The Subcommittee members expressed the desire to submit some questions to be considered and answered in the report. Thus, you will find appended a list of questions for your consideration. In no sense, however, should the extent of the report be circumscribed by these questions.
On behalf of the members of the Special Subcommittee and the Full Committee on Merchant Marine and Fisheries, I would like to thank you for your efforts in this matter. Sincerely,
THOMAS N. DOWNING, Chairman, Special Subcommittee on Maritime Education and Training.
(Committee note: See p. 138 for questions appended.)
MERCHANT MARINE OFFICER TRAINING
(A Report to the Subcommittee on Maritime Education and Training of the House of Representatives Committee on Merchant Marine and Fisheries by the Maritime Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce, February 1970.)
We must have men to man the ships of the American merchant marine envisioned in President Nixon's new maritime program. It will be many years, if ever, before ships can be operated without manpower. In the meantime the need will continue for highly trained officers to handle ships of ever increasing size, complexity, and value. The policy established by the Merchant Marine Act, 1936, as amended, that our merchant ships should be "manned by a trained and efficient citizen personnel," should continue to be our policy and should be carried out with vigor and foresight.
With the rapid changes being brought about by advancing technology and its intensive application to merchant shipping, it becomes necessary to review our manpower training program to determine whether it can meet the requirements of the fleet of the future. Such a review has been requested by the Special Subcommittee on Maritime Education and Training of the House of Representatives Committee on Merchant Marine and Fisheries. The Committee asked that the review include an historical evaluation of the program, an analysis of its present situation, and an exploration of future directions. A number of specific questions were submitted by various members of the Subcommittee (Appendix I), answers to which have been incorporated in this report.
Our review covers only training of merchant marine officers. Unlicensed men are still provided in sufficient numbers by the traditional method of on-the-job training, supplemented by several union programs for upgrading. The "hawsepipe" provides about two hundred new officers a year from men who have raised their licenses by individual study, either on or off the job. Most of the merchant marine officers of the future, however, will be supplied by the various training programs which are examined in this report.
SUMMARY OF CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
The thousands of men who have been trained by maritime schools since just before World War II have made an impressive contribution to the efficacy of our merchant fleet. They manned the tremendously expanded wartime fleet and contributed to the successful conclusion of that world-wide war. When opportunities for shipping declined after the War, many returned to shoreside occupations but others continued to sail. When the emergency demands of Korea and Vietnam called for sudden expansions of shipping, active seamen and expanded training courses succeeded in meeting the demand.
In peacetime, when jobs were available, the maritime school graduates have gone to sea. When jobs at sea were scarce, they found work in shoreside mari. time companies, in the armed forces, or in Government agencies such as the Navy, Coast Guard, Coast and Geodetic Survey, and Maritime Administration, where their training has been of special benefit. As seafarers, they are a new type of officer of broader and deeper education. To the maritime industry they have been a source of trained and educated talent for positions ashore.
With the advent of newer and more productive ships, it will be possible to increase carrying capacity with a decreased number of units. As more and more shipboard functions are automated, it will be possible to man larger, faster, and more complex ships with fewer men. Even with the plans for a modernized and expanded U.S. fleet, therefore, there will be a decreasing need for ship officers. Under present plans for officer training by the Federal and State maritime schools and the union schools, there will be within the next five years a surplus of nearly fifty percent more trained officers than the manpower requirements indicate a need for. With continued attrition of older men now in service, and with the new maritime construction program in full swing, this surplus will decrease somewhat, but by the end of the next decade there will still be about thirty percent more men than indicated jobs.
A deliberate oversupply of trained men will depress the job market and result in a waste of time, money, and talent. Some cutback in training appears necessary but the dimensions of the cutback will also be governed by other factors affecting the demand for trained seamen.
One of these is the growing emphasis on oceanography and the acute need for trained manpower to meet the many and varied needs of a new and largely unexplored domain under the sea. Another factor is the unknown but ever possible need for an emergency reserve to meet an unexpected national demand for trained seamen. It would seem the part of wisdom, therefore, to continue to provide a fairly high level of Federal support for officer training.
This support, however, should be guided by careful investigation of the type, amount, and quality of training required, an exploration of the needs and opportunities expected to exist, and the best way of meeting them.
We therefore conclude and recommend :
1. There will continue to be a need for trained merchant marine officers in the foreseeable future to meet the national need for a U.S. merchant marine capable of promoting U.S. trade and supporting our armed froces.
2. Commencing with the next budget cycle Federal support and encouragement of training programs for mechant marine officers should be reduced from present levels and directly related to demand.
3. At present projected levels of training by all agencies, there will be a large surplus of trained men over the foreseeable demand for active officers.
4. Maritime schools should be encouraged to expand their areas of interest into oceanography and related marine fields to provide manpower that will be needed in these areas in the future.
5. The Maritime Administration should continue to provide the best and most advanced training at the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy to serve as a guide to other schools.
6. The Maritime Administration should set up an advisory committee composed of representatives of labor, industry, interested government agencies, and training schools to provide guidance as to types of training needed, new opportunities to be met, level and quality of training required, and to coordinate the indicated demand and supply of trained merchant marine officers. 7. Provision for emergency needs can be met by:
(a) More intensive use of men in active service.
(c) Expansion of training courses where possible, especially union courses.
(d) A full-scale wartime training program if required.
HISTORICAL BACKGROUND OF MARITIME TRAINING
On-the-job and apprentice training has been the traditional method of training for merchant seamen, and is even today the principal method of training for unlicensed men and for about 200 officers who come “up the hawsepipe" by their own efforts. For many years developments in the marine field were gradual enough so that this method of training sufficed.
Immediately before World War I, both our ships and seamen were almost non-existent, and those in service were in deplorable condition. The tremendous effort to expand our merchant shipping capability in World War I succeeded only in supplying a great surplus of ships and men when the war was over, and the subsequent sharp drop in shipping opportunities resulted in another decline of the merchant marine to a dangerously low level.
The Merchant Marine Act of 1936 sought not only to provide the United States with the "best-equipped, safest, and most suitable types of vessels,” but to man them with "a trained and efficient citizen personnel." Section 216 of the Act was added in 1938 and further amended in 1939. Under the statutory authority of this section the (then) Maritime Commission in 1938 established the U.S. Merchant Marine Cadet Corps for the training of officers and the U.S. Maritime Service for the training of both licensed and unlicensed personnel. Training for the U.S. Merchant Marine Cadet Corps was first given aboard merchant ships and later at temporary shore establishments. The present site in Kings Point, Long Island, New York, was acquired in March 1942, and the United States Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point was officially dedicated on September 30, 1943.
Five State maritime academies were also in existence at that time. The New York State Maritime College was founded as the N.Y. Nautical School in 1874; the Pennsylvania Maritime Academy (which closed in 1947) was founded in 1889; the Massachusetts Maritime Academy was started as the Massachusetts Nautical School in 1891 ; the California Maritime Academy in 1929; the Maine Maritime Academy in 1941. The Texas Maritime Academy was established later, in 1964.
The first Federal authority and encouragement for the establishment of state nautical schools for the training of merchant marine officers was contained in an act passed in 1874, which placed jurisdiction over the schools in the Navy. In 1940 the academies were transferred to the U.S. Maritime Commission, predecessor of the Maritime Administration. The Maritime Academy Act of 1958 is the current authorization for Federal aid to State maritime schools.
The State schools were originally primarily vocational schools, dedicated to turning out practical seamen. Almost all of them now provide an accredited college education together with maritime training.
With the advent of World War II, tremendous pressure was put upon all the training schools to turn out men to man the thousands of new ships that were soon pouring off the ways. The Government built huge training stations at Sheepshead bay, New York; Avalon, California ; and St. Petersburg, Florida. Special training and upgrading courses were started for experienced men. Thousands of young boys and men who had never set foot on a ship came to learn as quickly as possible the elements of seamanship. Other young men took the intensified course of cadet training at the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point. From 1938 to December 1, 1945, more than 262,000 men graduated from the various training courses. Of these, 31,986 were officers, of which 7,291 came from the Cadet Corps, 21,988 from the U.S. Maritime Service for experienced seamen, and 2,707 were trained by the State maritime academies. Thes men turned in an enviable record of devotion to duty and heroism during the fierce war at sea.
Once the war and the immediate postwar boom were over, there was a long slow decline in officer jobs available. Navy men returned to shore jobs, but by 1950 the 580 maritime academy cadets graduating came into a job market still over-shadowed by the presence of large numbers of officers trained during the war years, and only one-third of the job opportunities existing at the peak of the World War II training effort.
The demands of the Korean War took up the slack, and there were soon some severe shortages in radio operators and engineers. Appeals to wartime trainees to return to sea, and some crash upgrade courses were able to take care of that emergency. The State and Federal academies continued to turn out an average of 430 men each year from 1945–59. Continued attrition of the officer work force after the Korean War exceeded the decline in the jobs available, so that by 1962–63 the employment outlook for academy graduates was more favorable, and there were even projections of future shortages of maritime officers.
By late 1965 the expanded shipping effort in support of the Vietnam operation had again created severe shortages of officers, particularly of engineers, to man the 160 additional ships pulled out of the reserve fleets to carry military cargoes for the Military Sea Transportation Service. To meet the need for men, the academies accelerated their courses and graduated their classes early during the two most serious crisis years. The seafaring unions and the companies with which they had contracts established a number of schools for officers. Some of these union schools have been set up on a permanent basis, with considerable investments in capital and elaborate plans for the future. While the union schools have greater flexibility than the State and Federal schools, with their collegeaccredited curricula, and it is not likely that they will continue to train large numbers of officers for a declining market, they will probably continue to provide training in addition to the Federal and State schools in the future.
At present there is an adequate supply of deck and engineer officers, with indications of a surplus which will increase sharply in the period 1970–74 as the phase-out of war-built ships causes an estimated 40% decline in demand for officers. With the advent of new ships built under the proposed new maritime program reaching the expected level of 30 ships a year by 1973, officer jobs should improve but present indications are that there will be a continued surplus of men over jobs throughout the next decade.
EMPLOYMENT RECORD OF ACADEMY GRADUATES
Shipping has traditionally been a "feast or famine” business, with violent swings between shortages and surpluses of jobs. Establishing a long-term career at sea has therefore been difficult for many graduates. Large numbers of academy trained men have gone into active Navy duty and have pursued regular careers in the Navy, where their training made them particularly valuable. Many of those who did remain at sea in the merchant marine for a number of years, at length used their seafaring experience to win shoreside jobs in the maritime industry. Many graduates were offered more attractive jobs ashore and never went into active merchant marine service.
Comprehensive statistics covering the careers of all of the academy graduates in the period 1950–1969 do not exist. We do not have work force breakdowns