PORT Authority of New South Wales says it is seeking the next young seafarer to join its two-year cadet program.

The Sponsored Deck Cadet Program is a two-year course helping participants gain the 18-months of sea-time experience required for a Watchkeeping Certificate by the Australian Maritime Safety Authority.

According to PANSW, cadets on the program gain seagoing experience on merchant ships in maintenance, mooring, bridge watch-keeping, navigation, passage planning, security and various shipboard management systems.

The intention is for cadets to progress to becoming deck officers on merchant ships and ultimately achieve their Master qualification.

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Applications are open now and close at 5pm Friday 20 September.

Sydney harbour master Philip Holliday said the program, launched in August last year, was promoted by Port Authority’s marine pilots who recognised the need to build the Australian maritime skill base and help young seafarers overcome the challenges of starting their maritime career.

“We’ve partnered with a number of shipping companies to offer cadets placements on various merchant ships, backed with the support of a Port Authority mentor,” Mr Holliday said.

“We hope that the cadets progress to become deck officers on merchant ships and ultimately achieve their Master qualification, affording them options to then fulfil maritime leadership roles ashore.”

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