Careers into Maritime Ashore

The Careers to Maritime Ashore project has created a new qualification preparing adult re-trainers, school and college leavers for shore-based maritime roles. The qualification is designed to provide a stepping stone for people to gain a basic level of understanding of the various roles available and to assist with making informed choices about working in the industry.  


The project was established to align with 2 - 7 of the Maritime Skills Commission's objectives and to deliver the follow:

  • To raise the profile of the industry within schools and colleges
  • To offer an introductory listed qualification for post 16 providers
  • To ensure Maritime shore careers are more visible and accessible
  • To establish a pool of trained candidates for employers 
  • To ensure the highest level of excellence within the Industry in shore-based roles
  • To raise the level of skilled personnel within the UK in line with Maritime 2050 priorities.

Current roles in maritime ashore include:

  • Port operations (agency, vessel operations, chandlery stevedoring, customs)
  • Commercial (shipbroking, chartering, sale & purchase)
  • Operations (crewing, surveying, superintendent)
  • Legal (P&I, loss adjustor, arbitration, marine insurance)
  • Regulatory (marine surveyor, MCA, Port State Control, UK Border Force)
  • Shipbuilding (naval architect, boatbuilder)

The new qualification will:

  • Provide a L3 Certificate in Maritime Studies (Open Awards)
  • Require a minimum 18 credits and total learning time 300 hours 
and be
  • ESFA funded (subject eligibility) at £1,645 weighted
  • Approved for ‘first L3 Offer’ and listed as DfE high value qualification 
  • UCAS 24pts (equiv 1 x A level)
  • Available progression from L1 & 2
  • Assessed through non-exam based assessment
  • Fully supported by the Institute of Chartered Shipbrokers.

The structure of the qualification is that learners complete 5 units comprising of both of the core units and three of the optional units which are: 

Core units -

  • Roles in maritime
  • Vessel types and design
3 Optional units (for shoreside) chosen from -

  • Port services and operation
  • Commercial shipping operations
  • Maritime trade
  • Managing a marine business
  • Vessel construction and engineering


The project has now concluded and a new qualification from Open Awards aimed towards shore based roles in the Maritime Industry is now available. You can find out more about the qualification here. Traditionally, maritime training and qualifications has been aimed at sea cadets and those wanting to go to sea but this new Level 3 Certificate is designed for 16 -18 year old students, as well as adult re-trainers, who are aware of the shipping sector and who want to learn more about the careers available and a basic understanding of the industry.  

The course was successfully delivered at Hugh Baird College in Liverpool in conjunction with Marine Society College and is now available from the North East School of Shipping based at Stockton Riverside College.  

With thousands of people employed in the shore side roles of the shipping industry this is the perfect ‘first step’ into a career which is desperate for new, dynamic and diverse people to fill the skills gap.  

The course is now live with Open Awards so any existing center can register learners. 

The Commission is grateful to Nikki Sayer, Director at Casper Shipping and a Commissioner, and Darrell Bate, Director of Maritime Training and Development, Marine Society  for delivering this project.