SIBU: The country is facing an acute shortage of seafarers and more than 50 per cent of sailors in the country are foreigners.
“It’s not that Malaysians are not capable of becoming seafarers but many are actually not introduced to the profession,” said head of Nautical Studies at the Sarawak Maritime Academy here, said Captain Abdul Aziz Abdullah.
The academy, Aziz said, was making things easier for Sarawakians as they need no longer travel to Malacca to take up training.
Still, Aziz said many parents here were unaware of the academy’s existence and the benefits of taking up seafaring as a career.
Meanwhile, the second batch of students taking up Diploma in Nautical Studies and Marine Engineering at Sarawak Maritime Academy will commence studies on July 6.
Aziz said over 60 students had applied for the course but only 21 were approved.
“Not all applicants were successful as they have to pass a very regimented training programme, just like what the National Service trainees are undergoing. So in the end, we have to reject many of the applications,” he said.
Aziz, however, said those interested could still write in and arrange for an interview as the academy could easily accommodate up to 120 students at any one time.
He said a certificate of competency was the basic requirement for a seafarer who wishes to serve on board a vessel as a navigating (deck) officer or marine engineer. The certificate would enable the seafarers to go anywhere in the world to work.
For entry requirements, all it takes is for the students to have at least a credit in Science, Maths, English and Bahasa Malaysia for Diploma in Nautical Studies and a credit in Physics, Add Maths, English and Bahasa Malaysia for Marine Engineering. On top of that, the applicants must be mentally, physically and medically fit, and possess a positive mindset and attitude. The estimated cost of the entire three-year course excluding modular and living costs is RM39,000.
Academy director Goh Chin Guan, who was also at the press conference, said the academy boasted of having the best facilities in Malaysia. Among them were Poseidon Borealis Full Ship Bridge Simulator, UNITEST Medium Speed Engine room Simulator MED3D, smokehouse, swimming pool, computer laboratory and hostel facilities.
Those interested to know more about the academy can log on to website www.smswak.com.my. or call them at 084-216799
Source :- sarawaknews