In 2022, MITAGS reached the significant milestone of 50 years in operation as the leading training facility for maritime simulation and mariner license advancement. We took a moment of gratitude to look back at how we have grown as an organization, and we are humbled to think how so many of you have been a part of our story and entrusted your training and research needs to us over the past 50 years. We look forward to the exciting opportunities still to come and invite you to come along with us on our continuing journey.

Where We Started

In 1968, the Maritime Advancement, Education, Training, and Safety Program (M.A.T.E.S.) was established as a non-profit trusteeship by the International Organization of Masters, Mates, and Pilots (I.O.M.M.&P.), together with its contracted companies. Soon afterward construction began on an original training facility in Linthicum Heights, Maryland. In 1972, the Maritime Institute of Technology and Graduate Studies launched operations as the primary training facility of the I.O.M.M.&P., specializing in mariner license advancement instruction. Soon thereafter, the school invested in simulation as a training tool to enhance the classroom experience and robust lecture-based curriculum. Simulation proved to be not only effective but also ground-breaking as a training approach and opened the door to opportunities in operational and navigational research. Since the mid-1970s, MITAGS’ simulation research has provided many shipping companies, port authorities, maritime associations, and others with valuable studies in port and channel construction and accident prevention. Over time, MITAGS expanded operations to the West Coast, with the acquisition of the U.S. Maritime Administration’s Radar School in Seattle, Washington in the 1980s and more recently the purchase of Fremont Maritime, one of the leading marine safety providers in the Pacific Northwest. Across both campuses, MITAGS built a tradition of providing high-quality maritime apprenticeship and license advancement programs, and watchkeeping assessment programs (Navigational Skills Assessment Program – NSAP®), which have received international recognition.

Who We Are

Today, MITAGS is the leader in maritime training, medical and fire prevention safety programs, maritime meteorology courses, pilot programs, ship simulation and operational research, providing customized solutions for both individual companies and mariners, and members of the International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots. MITAGS maintains the high standards of Det Norske Veritas (DNV-GL) as a certified Maritime Training Provider and offers courses and programs which are approved by the United States Coast Guard, the STCW code, Military Sealift Command (MSC), the International Lighthouse Authority (IALA), the American Pilots’ Association (APA), the Maryland Higher Education Commission (MHEC), and the Washington State Workforce Training, Education, and Coordinating Board. Recently MITAGS was designated by the Maritime Administration (MARAD) as a 2021-2022 Center of Excellence (CoE) for Domestic Maritime Workforce Training and Education.

At MITAGS East, the Maritime Conference Center operates our conference center and hotel. Conference revenues are used to support our non-profit mission. The additional funding helps us to develop new courses, innovate award-winning US Department of Labor programs as well as create industry-leading assessment programs. The Hotel at the Maritime Conference Center plays a critical role by providing housing and dining facilities along with a first-class support team. Through the combined efforts of our academic, conference, and hotel operations, MITAGS has set the standard for experience, expertise, and excellence in maritime training and simulation. On August 3, 2022, during the I.O.M.M.&P. 89th Regular Convention, MITAGS Executive Director Eric Friend announced that 2022 marks MITAGS’ 50th year of service to the members of the I.O.M.M.&P., mariners across the U.S., and around the world. To commemorate this milestone year of operations, Friend announced the commencing of a year of celebration. In this 50th year of MITAGS, our goal is to recognize MITAGS’ accomplishments and impact domestically and internationally, and to raise awareness of its mission: to enhance the professionalism of mariners through the development of quality maritime leadership, education, training and safety programs.

Where We Are Headed, and How You Can Be a Part of It

We invite you to partner with MITAGS in this mission and help to ensure its ability to continue fulfilling that mission for decades to come. As a newly designated 501(c)(3) non-profit, MITAGS is now able to accept charitable gifts and donations from those who wish to support. Your donations will allow MITAGS to make necessary updates to the campus facilities and technology and augment the high level of hospitality MITAGS and the Maritime Conference Center are known for. Your gifts will aid us in projects such as:

  • Classroom and hotel renovations
  • Implementation of e-books in the classroom and virtual classroom
  • Conversion of curriculum to online learning
  • Technology investments to allow remote proctoring and testing capability
  • New passenger bus/ airport shuttle
  • Upgraded training and simulation equipment
  • And more!

Your partnership will also guarantee that MITAGS can continue to provide necessary safety and navigation training that I.O.M.M.&P. members and mariners from around the country and the world rely on, and enable MITAGS to continue pressing onward into the new frontier of simulation technology and training excellence.

Help MITAGS by donating today! All donations help support our mission to enhance mariner professionalism through quality maritime leadership, training, education and safety programs.

We invite you to celebrate with us, and to stay tuned for more on the MITAGS 50th Anniversary celebratory events to come in the following months.


MITAGS has been supporting mariners for over 50 years. Donate now.