Dr. John Barlow, Vice President for Academic Affairs and Academic Dean at Maine Maritime Academy (MMA), announced the appointment of Captain Timothy N. Leach, of Castine, Maine, to the post of director of career services and cadet shipping at the Castine college. Leach, the immediate past waterfront operations manager at MMA, recently transitioned to the post, bringing with him more than 30 years of experience in maritime industry relations, vessel operations, and marina management. In his new position at Maine Maritime Academy, Leach will be responsible for the overall management of the college’s career services department which liaisons between current students and alumni, and the greater maritime industry to facilitate employment opportunities, networking, and industry relations. Given the college’s diversification in academic offerings, the Career Services department links the college and its graduates to a variety of industry employers well beyond the maritime transportation and engineering fields. The department also works to promote the skills of MMA graduates within the power generation, marine sciences, and international business and logistics arenas.
The Career Services Department is also responsible for the annual placement of more than 150 students in short-term posts aboard commercial vessels. Known as Cadet Shipping, the program provides vital seatime training required for the licensure of students enrolled in traditional seafaring majors aboard some of the world’s largest ships. Placed in a real-life, no-nonsense assignment, unlimited license candidates spend their sophomore summer aboard commercial vessels visiting
ports worldwide and working alongside professional navigation and engineering officers. Students are assigned to merchant vessels as cadets for further familiarization in shipboard procedures, standing watches, and completing assigned projects within their major.
According to Barlow, Leach began his duties in late December. “Tim’s long-standing commitment to Maine Maritime Academy gives
him a solid understanding of the importance of this role in serving the needs of our students, alumni, and industry partners. As a professional mariner, he’s respected for his abilities, management style, and innovation. As a representative of this college, he is highly regarded for his generosity, willingness to serve, and his appreciation for the needs of those he serves,” said Barlow. Barlow noted that the college is reputed for excellence in job placement, which annually exceeds 90 percent professional employment within 6 months of graduation for its students.
A U.S. Coast Guard licensed master of vessels not in excess of 500-gross tons, Leach is a highly experienced mariner. He was instrumental in the development of the college’s classroom and applied skills program in tug and barge operations, the only one of its kind in the United States.
He holds an A.S. degree in marine engineering from Southern Maine Technical College. He also earned a B.S. degree in small vessel operations and an M.S. degree in maritime management from Maine Maritime Academy. A graduate of George Stevens Academy (GSA), Blue Hill, Maine, he served for more than seven years as a volunteer member of the GSA Board of Trustees.
An active mariner and community leader, he has served as a volunteer member of the Board of Directors of the Maine Retired Skippers Race for more than 25 years. He is also a member of the Castine Harbor Committee and the Northeast Sector Homeland Security Committee
. He served on the Maine Department of Transportation Bridge Oversight Committee for the Penobscot Narrows Bridge
replacement. He is a former vice chairman of the Castine Merchant’s Association. A native of Penobscot, he lives with his wife, Gay, in Castine.