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Head of Department: Capt C Johnsen
Tel: 031 373 2144
Fax: 031 373 2137
Location: Steve Biko Campus, S6 L5
The National Diploma: Maritime Studies is suitable for the person who wishes to gain the knowledge and skills required to build a successful career in shipping and allied industries. It provides a broad base of core marine-related subjects in the first semester, with the option of specialising thereafter.
The course operates on a semester basis. The requirements for the award of the National Diploma are the successful completion of three semesters at the Durban University of Technology (Level I, II, III), studying six subjects per semester, plus twelve months working as a trainee in the industry. This experiential component will normally be under taken, in whole or in part, prior to the final Durban University of Technology semester.
National Diploma in Maritime Studies
This programme is offered as a two-year course of study at Durban University of Technology followed by a year of Workplace Integrated Learning (WIL) in the maritime industry, either sea-going as a cadet navigation officer or shore-based with a company in the maritime service industry. Cadet navigation officers need to be medically fit with good eyesight and normal colour vision.
The Department of Maritime Studies also offers a two-year Non-Diploma Marine Engineering programme. This is essentially a Mechanical Engineering Diploma, offered by the Department of Engineering and the Built Environment, plus specific subjects offered by the Department of Maritime Studies. This is followed by a sea-going career path commencing as a marine engineer cadet. You need to be medically fit with normal colour vision.
Maritime Studies (Sea-going students)
As a navigation officer (usually called a deck officer) you'll be a vital member of the ship's management team and, when employed on sophisticated and expensive vessels with valuable cargo or passengers in your charge, it's a big responsibility. While on duty (called a 'watch'), it will be down to you to make decisions on steering and manoeuvring the ship, controlling navigation and communications. Using the latest technological systems, you'll have control at your fingertips. In port you'll be responsible for cargo handling and ship stability. As a senior deck officer, you'll be a leading member of a small team of skilled, professional seafarers, including junior officers and ratings. You'll direct and supervise the work of your team - maintaining the ship and its equipment at optimum efficiency. Your ultimate goal in this sea-going career path would to become the Master (Captain).*
Recommended qualities & skills
You'll need to be decisive, calm and able to inspire confidence in others. You'll be a good team member with mathematical ability, an interest in technology, and good written and verbal communication skills. Beyond that, confidence, enthusiasm and self-reliance are essential attributes.*
As an engineer officer you'll operate and maintain all the mechanical and electrical equipment throughout the ship. You'll be responsible for power generation and distribution systems and for other equipment such as lifts, refrigeration plant and pumping and ventilation systems. Via a bank of high-tech instrumentation, you'll monitor mechanical, electrical, hydraulic and control equipment, and have charge of sophisticated engine management systems. You'll overhaul and maintain equipment throughout the ship where your engineering problem-solving skills will be your greatest asset. As a senior engineer officer you'll lead a team of professional engineering personnel and supervise their work at sea and in port. Your aim should be for the top position in the engineering department - the Chief Engineer.*
Recommended qualities & skills
You'll need to be practical, resourceful and have a real interest in mechanical and electrical systems, with good mathematical ability. Like deck officers you'll be decisive, calm and able to inspire confidence in others. Good written and verbal communication skills are required. Beyond this you'll need to be prepared to learn about new technology and adapt your skills to its use. *
* Extracted from www.careersatsea.org/roles/officers.php
Maritime Studies (Shore-based students)
Successful completion of the National Diploma in Maritime Studies will equip you to join shore-based companies involved in the commercial and service activities of global maritime trade. The scope of employment opportunities is wide and varies from: positions with shipowners and operators; port and allied operations’ firms; insurers and surveyors; to a multitude of functions within import or export companies.
Typically, commercial activities include: supply chain/import/export processes and administration; container shipping; bulk shipping; customs & excise procedures; international payments; negotiation of contracts of carriage by land and sea; chartering activities; cargo operations; cargo care and quality control; insurance; communication with local and international customers and banking institutions; and liaison with marketing and production departments, sales agents and service providers.
Recommended qualities & skills
A thorough and energetic approach to work, underpinned with tenacity and good written and verbal communication skills. Initiative, problem solving ability, trustworthiness and collaborative ability will hold you in good stead to succeed in this diverse and challenging industry sector.
The following websites will provide useful information:
Grade 12 school-leaving certificate with Mathematics, English and Physical Science at a minimum level of D on Standard Grade, or an Adequate Achievement (4) under the new National Senior Certificate. Selection will be based on levels of achievement in Mathematics, English and Physical Science.
Applicants for the sea-going programme are warned that those with HIV/Aids infections may not be accepted by foreign ship owners, and females are advised that less than 2% of the marine workforce is female. Those applying for the sea-going navigation programme need to have good eyesight (no colour blindness) and good health. Please refer to our Department Hand Book for details of the eyesight and medical fitness certification required.