by Cynthia Goss
The eighth Annual Marine Industry and Career Day, sponsored by the Rhode Island Marine Trades Association (RIMTA) and IYRS, will take place on Saturday, March 23. The event will draw employers from throughout the region coming to the school with one goal in mind: to connect with individuals interested in careers in the marine and composites industry.
Career Day, which is free to the public, takes place at the IYRS Newport campus (449 Thames Street) from 9AM to 12PM. In addition to meeting and talking with employers, attendees can learn about training opportunities and attend informative presentations by experts on career building, technology, and working in the marine industry.
Recent data reveals a positive outlook for hiring in the Rhode Island marine industry, according to a survey conducted by RIMTA. The responding companies employ a combined workforce of some 700 individuals. In the past 12 months, these companies have created 93 new positions. These same companies expect their combined workforce to grow an additional 12% in the next 12 months.
'The data we are seeing is painting a positive picture—both for the marine trades and for those who are interested in working in this important Rhode Island industry,' said Wendy Mackie, CEO of RIMTA. 'Career Day is a valuable once-a-year opportunity for individuals who are interested in networking with employers, learning more about our business, and building a career.'
Neal Harrell—founder of Newport-based Brooks Marine Group, a recruiting firm that specializes in the marine industry—sees this same growth in hiring in the marine industry on a national level.
'We are definitely on an uptick right now,' says Harrell. 'I’d call it a hiring blitz. The biggest demand I see is for skilled trades personnel at boatyards and dealerships.' According to Harrell, mechanics, systems-related technicians, electronics experts, and composites builders are skill areas that are currently in high demand. Harrell is also seeing hiring among the OEM boat manufacturers, a result of pent-up demand for new boats; the new-boat sector he sees as being strongest is the under-30-foot sector.
Harrell and other industry experts will be giving informative presentations for career seekers during the one-day event, including:
'Navigating Your Career: The Dos and Don’ts of Job Search'
Neal Harrell, Brooks Marine Group - Harrell, a leading recruiter for the marine industry, will show career seekers how to create a sound process for a job search that works in today’s marketplace. That process involves building the necessary tools—including a well-written resume, networking and interviewing techniques, and smart use of social media—identifying your market, and promoting yourself effectively to decision-makers. This is a valuable talk for job seekers looking to market themselves in today’s economy.
'From IYRS Student to Skilled Tradesman to Entrepreneur'
Morgan Huntley, Vanquish Boats - Morgan Huntley graduated from the IYRS Marine Systems program in 2008. After working at Hinckley and Loughborough Marine, he went out on his own in 2010. That year, he bought the tooling for a small powerboat that his experience and passion for boats told him had great potential—even in a tough economy. The boat, called a Vanquish Runabout, was a smart combination of classic lines and modern features. Come to Career Day to hear the story of a skilled tradesman who saw an opportunity and turned it into a successful business venture in Rhode Island.
'An Emerging Technology within the Marine Industry'
Captain Daniel Harper, Siren Marine - Siren Marine founder Captain Daniel Harper has spent over 20 years sailing the globe. Throughout his voyaging—primarily on his 42-foot Swan Corban, often singlehanded—he has experienced most every problem and challenge that boaters face. Living aboard the majority of this time, Harper observed that small problems quickly become big problems when no one is aboard. He has spent the past seven years working on a solution that has evolved into Siren Marine’s Pixie and Sprite electronic boat monitoring systems. Learn about this exciting new technology from Harper and how it will affect the entire marine industry—from insurance, to manufacturing, to customer service.
For more information on Career Day on March 23, including an updated list of companies attending the event, visit www.iyrs.org.