Where could a career in the maritime industry take you?
Study one of our programmes and you will open the door to a world of opportunities.
The passenger, construction and towage industry need young people to be the masters and engineers of tomorrow.
If you love the ocean and are good at technical subjects, launch your training at the best facility New Zealand has to offer.
"I’ve always been interested in fishing and diving and doing a bit of sailing when I was growing up. I thought it would be a cool way to extend that hobby into a career. All the instructors are A grade. Top of the line.
A lot of the practical learning is done in the simulator. There’s fairly realistic situations the lecturers can put you into. They can turn up the sea, they can reduce the visibility. They can put you in quite a hectic situation which really makes you think on your feet. Much like the real world could be.
My ideal job would be working on a boat, going cool places, preferably warm, and being able to see some pretty cool places around the country and around the world eventually.
Studying at NZMS is definitely worth it. It’s a good way to progress and it can lead to some pretty cool opportunities in the marine industry."
"I’ve spent most of my life growing up, on and around water. My old man worked in the fishing industry and is a skipper.
I was living on Stewart Island so for me I wasn’t able to come here for three months with work, so the distance learning, doing it all online played a huge role in me actually being able to do this course.
Having a career at sea means you get to experience things you can’t experience because there are no roads. Seeing whales, seeing dolphins, penguins are not uncommon. Every year we’d see a few whales as we travel up the coast. You get to experience a lot of what NZ is meant to be like. Getting away from all these big cities. Experiencing the nature and peacefulness of it all.
Most of maritime is hands-on experience. You always learn under a particular skipper. So you learn their way of doing things. But by coming here you’re learning the standard of the industry. It gives you that theoretical knowledge of why you’re doing something.
There are 7 simulators with one that is practically a boat. So that’s great hands-on because you can operate in low visibility with targets. It’s the most realistic way of learning how to do a lot of these things without actually being on a boat.
There’s quite a lot of work out there if you’re able to get experience."
"I’ve never been a student, I was a little bit on the fence about it but once I got here everything just worked out perfectly. I’ve just learnt so much more from being here.
There’s about 20 plus of us most of the time on the course. It is a good number. There’s also people from different backgrounds and other courses incorporated into the modules which is really good because you get people who have been in completely different circumstances. We have fishermen, we have sailors, and we have people doing their Skipper Coastal Offshore.
The thing I love about the course here at the NZMS is they do put a lot of theory into practice. We spent two weeks in the computer laboratory room learning the programmes, especially the electronic chart display and GPS, all of our navigational aids, and radar set up. Then we come into the bridge and put it all into practice which has been really helpful.
We also get put into emergency situations which obviously day to day in our jobs, you hope you don’t really come across. For example, a full search and rescue where each boat had a full search pattern and we had to follow that, follow the instructions, and search for a life raft with a person who we did ultimately find. Something like that is really helpful because in the real world if that does happen, we will have this hands-on training to refer back to."
"My old man has been in the merchant navy for most of his life and his father before him so it was a natural progression for me. I went into the fishing industry and haven’t looked back.
I enjoy the simulator the most at NZMS. The hands-on approach. Building up confidence for real-life scenarios. It’s hard being away from the family, but when you are home you’ve got a comfortable lifestyle and your family is able to see you. Get amongst it. It's good fun. It’s definitely a good career path. It pays good."
"We’ve got a really wide variety of domestic maritime programmes. We have a couple of programmes like the super yacht certificate that are really good for people entering the industry who don’t have any industry experience. The rest of our programmes are really geared towards people who are already in industry and are actually doing at-work learning and workplace learning. So they could be for people who are working for ferry companies, tug operators, coastal research vessels, all the way through to the inshore fishing fleet, offshore fleet and we do have programmes for super yacht, chief mate and master.
Everything that we are talking about in the theoretical aspect has a practical application on the vessel. So even though we talk about theory it’s actually put into practice. One of the things we’re talking about is in the simulator here. We can talk about theoretical collision, prevention regulations, all sorts of things like that, but it’s actually doing it in something like the simulator that makes the difference. So where it can be, it’s always reinforced in a practical sense.
One of the things about working on-board a vessel is that you do have a routine but your routine is punctuated by difference every day. So even though you have a solid routine that runs through your ship when you’re navigating from A to B, things change all the time. So it’s always quite exciting. You never quite know what’s happening or coming up. When you look out your window you’re in an amazing environment that changes all the time."
NZ Maritime School senior lecturer
The following programmes are available in this area of study:
- New Zealand Certificate in Domestic Maritime Operations (Coastal and Offshore) (Level 4)
- New Zealand Certificate in Domestic Maritime Operations (Restricted Limits) (Level 4)
- New Zealand Certificate Maritime Operations with strands in Fishing, and Watchkeeping (Level 4) Also known as Officer of the Watch <500GT Near Coastal, Watchkeeper Deck <500GT NC, Mate Fishing Vessel – Limited
- New Zealand Certificate in Maritime Operations (Level 5) Also known as Master <500GT Near Coastal and Skipper Fishing Vessel - Limited