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On May 19th, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration (MARAD) announced the designation of 27 Centers of Excellence for Domestic Maritime Workforce Training and Education (CoE). The CoE designation recognizes community colleges and training institutions that prepare students for careers in our nation’s maritime industry. These academic institutions are located in sixteen states and one U.S. territory. MITAGS was one of six dedicated maritime training centers selected for this designation.

“Our collaboration with these institutions represents an important expansion of MARAD’s role in supporting maritime education and will help form pathways to good-paying American jobs in our nation’s maritime industry,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg.

MARAD may now start working with the designated institutions to enter into cooperative agreements to help advance recruitment of students and faculty, enhance facilities, award student credit for military service, and potentially receive assistance in the form of surplus equipment or temporary use of MARAD vessels.

Authorized under the National Defense Authorization Act of 2018, the CoE program is designed to assist the maritime industry in gaining and sustaining a well-trained labor force while enhancing diversity and inclusion in the industry.

“The CoE designations recognize the high standard of maritime education and training provided by the designated community and technical colleges and maritime training centers. These institutions play vital roles in our nation’s maritime industry by providing the training and skills students need to begin and advance careers afloat and ashore,” said Acting Maritime Administrator Lucinda Lessley.

Information regarding the CoE program and the application process was disseminated through Federal Register notices. Successful applicants include accredited community colleges, technical colleges, and maritime training centers under State supervision. A searchable, interactive map is available to provide information on each CoE designee. For additional information, please visit Centers of Excellence on the MARAD website.