How To Start Your Career As A Sailor

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Those who wish to get a job as a Sailor must be strong and fit as the work may at times be largely physical.  They must have good communication skills, and be prepared to work cooperatively as part of a team.  Many Sailors have flexible work schedules which may involve working at any time of the day or night, in any weather, as required.  Career Sailors  have good manual dexterity, are good decision makers, and can stay calm in any situation.  All professional Sailors love the sea and have an interest in all aspects of marine transportation.

Sailors work on boats and ships of all sizes, including dredgers, tow boats, freighters, ferries, and literally any vessel that sails the lakes, seas, and oceans of the world.  You may be employed on a research ship,  ferry supplies to off-shore oil rigs, transport cargo or passengers, or guard our coastlines.  Sailors work long days, sometimes, but not always, punctuated by shore leave.  Many Sailors find a career in the merchant marines.

Although the life of a Sailor may be challenging, it is also highly rewarding.  Sailors have an opportunity to travel the world, seeing strange new places, and getting to meet a variety of people from all walks of life.  Along with hard work and a feeling of a job-well-done, the life of a career Sailor offers freedom, and adventure.

If you have a career as a Sailor, your duties will vary depending on your experience and the type of vessel on which you are employed.  You will work under the supervision of one or more senior officers.  You may help with loading and unloading cargo, care for ship’s equipment, maintain non-engineering areas, watch for obstacles, measure water depth, assist in plotting the course and resolving mechanical problems.  You may even steer the ship.  In general, you will be responsible for, or assist in, the day to day operation of your vessel.

If you want a career as a Sailor, you can start to educate yourself as soon as possible.  Learning to sail may start off as a hobby and later turn into a career.  Take sailing lessons and study on your own to learn about boats, their equipment, and the mechanics of sailing.

To become a Sailor on a professional basis, you will need a high school diploma.

When in high school, take courses in mathematics, especially trigonometry, geography, and English.  Study and get experience in map reading, boat handling, navigation, and water safety.

The next step would be to get your instructor’s certificate.  By doing this you will gain further knowledge and get experience in sailing as well as teaching.  To obtain your certificate you must be at least eighteen years of age and have trained in both first aid and CPR.  You will then need to pass a qualifying exam and obtain your license.

For information about training in the merchant marines, go to the following site.

For further information about sailing and a list of sailing schools, go to the following site.

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