Helping to Cultivate the Next Generation of Maritime Workers in Tampa Bay

Helping to Cultivate the Next Generation of Maritime Workers in Tampa Bay

Aug 06, 2013

(Written by Guest Blogger: Donna Harak, President, Harak Associates)

Jefferson High School will offer a new magnet program this fall – the Maritime and Marine Environmental Science Honors Academy, designed to prepare students for a future in the exciting maritime industry.  The program will prepare students for maritime careers.

The Maritime industry is aging at a rapid pace with most workers in Tampa over 40 years old.  With a 15-billion-dollar impact on the local economy, this need cannot be ignored. 

The Maritime curriculum will touch on major aspects of the industry and is a one-of-a-kind model. The curriculum has been developed by Industry partners, including the International Propeller Club, Marine Engineers Beneficial Association and the Port of Tampa and was written by contextual learning trained teachers.

The curriculum is organized around 16 instructional units: Careers, Ships, Engineering, Oceanography, Admiralty Law, Port Operations, Marine Biology and others. The instruction is industry driven and is receiving national attention. The curriculum includes an internship in the junior year summer break that will offer on-the-job-training opportunities.

The Maritime curriculum began in 2009 at Stuart Middle School and Blake High School in 2011.  Hillsborough County School District decided this year to bring a Maritime Academy to Jefferson High School. Four teachers have completed internships in the port and will bring this experience to the classroom in August 2013.  With hundreds of high-wage jobs available across the maritime industry, this partnering of industry with educators will result in a talent flow to one of the area’s major employment sectors – the maritime industry.