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could I get some advice please?

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  • could I get some advice please?

    Hello everyone, my name is Cam and I am fairly new to this site, this is my first post so please forgive me if its kind of everywhere. I, like probably lots of other people on here, dream of one day becoming a Captain (I'm especially drawn to cruise ships as I picked up this dream as a child on my first cruise), I'm from America and I've noticed a lot of you guys/gals are from other countries and I've been trying to see if there was some way that I could become a deck cadet as I am in love with the idea of being one, going to school half the time and being able to have direct hands on job experience the other half of the time is an amazing idea to me but sadly all of my attempts to become one failed (as it seems most companies want people who are from countries within Europe thanks to the SMART funding). Not only that but I could really use a sponsorship from a shipping company like you all have over there in the EU, I have tried to going to one of the maritime univerisities over here but things didnt work out with the financial aid and I couldnt afford to go (it would have costed me $30,000+ a year to go and I was denied the loans I tried to get) ever since then I wont lie I've been kind of depressed in fact I've felt broken, so at the moment my life is kind of on pause when it comes to following my dream (which is literally all I want out of life, to have the career I want as a Captain) and I'm just not sure of what to do anymore (I've tried going to one of the universities here in the US and I've considered moving to another country and going to college there and becoming a deck cadet but nothing came of that either)thats why I came on here. I've been looking for some kind of advice from someone who has followed their dream and became one or on the road to becoming one and I'm really trying not to give up but its just so frustrating when nothing is working out for me, again I'm really sorry if this post was kind of everywhere and thank you so much for taking the time to read this. If anyone could please give me some advice I would be very grateful because at the moment I'm kind of desperate. Thanks again.

  • #2
    Hi mate, it is possible for you to study in the uk and get your ticket, there was an engine cadet from the US in my intake at WMA. Though you won’t be eligible for SMART so you’d have to pay your own way (on international fees) and sort your own sea time. The cadet I mentioned previously already had his sea time as he had qualified with the US Merchant Marine already. Best to send enquiries to the colleges directly and see if they have any advice.

    However, I would think that your best option by far is to attend the US Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, NY. I know it’s not an easy college to get into but there are plenty of people on this forum who’ve retaken exams or taken jobs/courses in order to get a cadetship. If you want it badly enough and really persevere I’m sure you can make it! Best of luck!

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    • #3
      If you take a look at American cargo ship companies, or even cruise companies, is there nothing on their "jobs" pages about sponsored cadetships through American naval colleges? Surely it's the same as the UK out there, I can't imagine anybody would bother if the only way was to pay $30k a year!

      Keep us updated on any progress and hopefully someone here will be able to help you more, good luck, it'll happen!

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      • #4
        On a lighter note... You could always just come and marry a British man/woman and become a citizen, taking advantage of our own sponsored schemes! it could be easier than saving $30,000+...

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        • #5
          You have to pay tuition at all the Maritime Colleges in the US with the exception of King’s Point which is a federal college.

          That being said, surely the state Maritime Colleges have scholarships like any other university?

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          • #6
            well they do have scholarships but most of them arent that easy to get and are usually to very specific things, like the one I was going to go to had one specifically for students from Hawaii, one for the legally blind, and the other one was only for students from the state (whilst I am out of state)

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            • #7
              I can tell you for sure that the cruise companies dont have anything about sponsored cadetships, I've tried contacting multiple companies and all of them either never contacted me back or they gave me a generic repsonse as if they didnt even read the email and when I tried calling some of them they would tell me there was no one to talk to about stuff like that, so ive certainly tried

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              • #8
                Originally posted by perksy121 View Post
                Hi mate, it is possible for you to study in the uk and get your ticket, there was an engine cadet from the US in my intake at WMA. Though you won’t be eligible for SMART so you’d have to pay your own way (on international fees) and sort your own sea time. The cadet I mentioned previously already had his sea time as he had qualified with the US Merchant Marine already. Best to send enquiries to the colleges directly and see if they have any advice.

                However, I would think that your best option by far is to attend the US Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point, NY. I know it’s not an easy college to get into but there are plenty of people on this forum who’ve retaken exams or taken jobs/courses in order to get a cadetship. If you want it badly enough and really persevere I’m sure you can make it! Best of luck!
                to be completely honest I was trying to avoid going to the USMMA at all costs, I don't have the heart to handle the bootcamp style indoctrination they have to go through (although all maritime acadimies have a regimental lifestyle some are a bit more lenient than others), and I didnt want to have to go through an 8 year commission in the reserve active duty after I graduated (as I said I am specifically drawn to cruise ships), I didnt mind going into the debt it was just the fact that I got turned down at every opportunity when it came to trying to get financial aid and I did everything I knew to do at the time, made plenty of phone calls trying to find some way but nothing ever came of it, everyone gave me the "sorry but I hope you will succeed at whatever else you choose to do".

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                • #9
                  Well as far as I understand it, as long as those eight years are spent on a Merchant Ship then you are fulfilling the criteria, cruise ships are included in that. It’s youre choice whether or not you want to serve with sealift command.

                  Given you have been turned down for financial aid I think the USMMA is the route you should take. I spent a fair bit of time in the States and, personally, I have a huge amount of respect for federal college graduates.

                  Oh and last thing, “legally blind”? That’s a generic college scholarship right? There’s no way a Maritime University has a scholarship for people who are legally blind surely? Haha.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by perksy121 View Post
                    Well as far as I understand it, as long as those eight years are spent on a Merchant Ship then you are fulfilling the criteria, cruise ships are included in that. It’s youre choice whether or not you want to serve with sealift command.

                    Given you have been turned down for financial aid I think the USMMA is the route you should take. I spent a fair bit of time in the States and, personally, I have a huge amount of respect for federal college graduates.


                    Oh and last thing, “legally blind”? That’s a generic college scholarship right? There’s no way a Maritime University has a scholarship for people who are legally blind surely? Haha.
                    I was not aware that cruise ships counted within the commission (I was under the impression that you HAD to do military service) if I would have known that I would have been there, I will definitely look more into it now, thank you so much for the advice, ill probably call them tomorrow hopefully it isnt too late to try to apply although it takes a lot, and yeah they didnt have many scholarships and I specifically remember that one because I tried to apply for it, as I wear glasses Lol, but anyways Ill see what I can do, thanks again for the advice

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