MITAGS Holds STCW-95 Working Group

Wednesday, September 18, 2002
The STCW-95 Working Group held a conference at the Maritime Institute of Technology and Graduate Studies (MITAGS) on September 4-5, 2002. Attendees included a diverse group of Government, Regulatory and Commercial Industry representatives. This conference was a continuation of work completed at previous sessions in 2001 and 2002. The mission of the STCW Working Group is to assist the United States Coast Guard’s National Maritime Center (NMC) in developing policies that integrate the new STCW-95 requirements into the existing U.S. licensing system. Agenda items included a review of certification/qualification requirements for U.S. licenses and ratings that meet the STCW Code, a review of progress made for entry-level or “hawsepipe” personnel, categorization of military training equivalencies, an examination of proposed U.S. Coast Guard Marine Licensing and Documentation System reorganization, discussion of onboard skills assessments and possible harmonization of the STCW and domestic licensing systems. The Conference consisted of six working groups: Certification and Qualification Requirements (deck/engine) - reviewed certification and qualification tables for accuracy, consolidated several license requirements into one table and aligned domestic license/ratings requirements. Entry Level and Hawsepipe - reviewed entry level and hawsepipe processes, identified unresolved issues such as training billets, sea service and outlined improvement processes. Military Equivalencies - identified military training equivalencies to STCW and additional training requirements for STCW certification in the military. Onboard Skills Assessment - reviewed onboard assessment references and authorization, demonstrated proper assessment methodology and identified potential problem areas. MLD Reorganization - identified a “model” marine licensing/documentation program and regional examination system, reviewed previous “reorganization efforts” and outlined a process to implement improvements. Harmonization and Streamlining of Licensing System – discussed possible replacement of existing near coastal and oceans domestic licensing system with the STCW certification. The STCW-95 Working Group recommendations and action items will be discussed at the next meeting of the Ship Operations Cooperative Program (SOCP), which is being held at the Maine Maritime Academy in Castine, Maine on October 16-17, 2002.
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