Careers in the Maritime Industry - The Northern Sydney Institute - NSI - TAFE NSW



As an island nation, Australia depends on a safe, efficient and environmentally sustainable maritime sector for its national productivity. Around a quarter of domestic freight and nearly all of our export freight is carried by ships and our cruise industry is booming. New investment in offshore oil and gas projects will also intensify the need for qualified seafarers and coastal maritime operators.

Maritime operations provide opportunities to work on a commercial boats and ships, including as a general purpose hand, coxswain, master or marine engine driver, even international opportunities on super yachts and ships with STWC95.

Shipwrights and boat builders are employed in areas around the waterfront such as marinas and boatsheds, and some work for the Australian Defence Force and for ferry companies.
The Northern Sydney Institute offers a range of accredited coursework for every maritime discipline and our life size maritime simulator is the closest thing to actually being at sea.

A look at the facts...

  • Job prospects are strong and are expected to grow over the next five years.
  • As a guide, deckhands earn an average of $1,300 per week while marine transport professionals can earn an estimated $1,900 per week.
  • Ships are the least energy intensive of all the transport modes – shipping currently contributes just 4% of the greenhouse emissions from the Australian freight transport system.
  • The number of containers crossing the nation’s wharves will increase by 150% by 2020.
  • The global cruise industry is booming. A record 20 million people took a cruise last year, including more than 500,000 in the Australian cruising market. Passenger numbers are expected to double by 2020.

(Source: Transport and Logistics Industry Skills Council;; International Cruise Council Australasia)

A career in maritime

Possible job roles include:

  • deck hand
  • general purpose hand
  • deck officer
  • marine engineer
  • ship’s master
  • maritime trainer/assessor
  • marine engine driver
  • coxswain
  • charter vessel guide
  • ship’s captain
  • ferry master
  • boat builder

Study and career pathways

There is more than one pathway to a successful career, and it may not always be in a straight line.

This maritime career pathway chart will give you some idea of how the different qualifications fit together and what they mean in the industry.

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