Commercial Vessel Compliance

3/10/2016: Coast Guard cadets to get merchant mariner credentialed

Beginning in 2016, qualifying graduates from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy now have the opportunity to obtain a domestic-only merchant mariner credential endorsement as a Master of Less Than 100 GRT, Near Coastal.

“The Coast Guard Academy is recognized as an exemplary institution and its graduates endure the academic and operational challenges necessary to prepare them for a maritime career. This program achieves the recognition of those skills and experiences obtained by our graduates throughout their four-year commitment to their service as commissioned officers in a maritime service academy,” said Capt. Verne Gifford, director of inspections and compliance.

Given the different program requirements needed by the Coast Guard, Coast Guard Academy cadets do not qualify for the third mate or third assistant engineer STCW credentials received at a state or federal maritime academy. However, this initiative enhances Coast Guard officer awareness of the Merchant Mariner Credentialing program while fostering credibility with the maritime industry.

“Going through the experience and process of obtaining a merchant mariner credential will only improve the aptitude and understanding of our academy graduates who will go out and become ship drivers, marine inspectors, and overall competent decision makers,” said Gifford.

Bravo Zulu to the 174 cadets from the Coast Guard Academy who earned their merchant mariner credentials at graduation in May, 2016!

This blog is not a replacement or substitute for the formal posting of regulations and updates or existing processes for receiving formal feedback of the same. Links provided on this blog will direct the reader to official source documents, such as the Federal Register, Homeport and the Code of Federal Regulations. These documents remain the official source for regulatory information published by the Coast Guard.

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