Career event seeks to shore up worker shortages

Posted on

A work force shortage in the boatbuilding industry has some Rhode Island industry advocates concerned.

The 9th Annual Marine and Composites Industry Career Day, which will take place March 22 at the IYRS campus in Newport, seeks to help offset those concerns.

The free event, hosted by the IYRS School of Technology & Trades and the Rhode Island Marine Trades Association, is an effort to attract more people to boatbuilding in anticipation of one of the busiest spring seasons the industry has seen in recent years.

“The marine industry suffered such a blow from 2008 to 2010,” Brooks Marine Group president Neal Harrell said in a statement. “We lost a lot of talent to other industries and we lost a lot of talent to retirement. We have positions open all over the industry, all over the country, but we don’t have the skilled labor force to fill those positions.”

A skills-gap study being conducted for RIMTA by Maine-based Planning Decisions projects that this trend is not going away anytime soon. By 2020, Rhode Island’s marine industry will need to hire an additional 1,800 workers; 71 percent of those projected hires are to replace baby boomers who are aging out of the work force and taking their well-honed skills with them.

Although it is a challenge for the industry, the situation translates to opportunity for skilled workers. The study also tallies the average marine-industry salary in Rhode Island as being about 5 percent higher than the average salary in the state’s private sector.

This year’s Career Day has drawn employers from the largest geographic area in the event’s history, according to IYRS industry relations coordinator Holly Ashton. “We have employers coming from as far afield as Maine, Florida and Michigan. They are interested in meeting our students, as well as those with the appropriate skills who want to work in the composites and marine industries,” Ashton said.

Career Day will be held from 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the IYRS Newport campus at 449 Thames St. Registration is not required, but is recommended; registered attendees will receive additional information to help them prepare for the event.

There will be two seminars. At 11 a.m. Harrell will discuss “Navigating Your Job Search in Today’s Economy” and give attendees a system for identifying, presenting themselves for and landing jobs in today’s marine industry.

At noon Neal Williamson of Hodgdon Yachts in East Boothbay, Maine, will talk about “Diversification of the Boatbuilding Industry and the Skills Needed to Succeed in a Changing Environment.”

Welcome to TradeOnlyToday’s premium content! To continue reading, please register now, for access to 10 free stories per month. Or subscribe, for unlimited access to all TradeOnlyToday content!

Click here to Register ... it's free!

Basic subscription: Registered members get free access to 10 premium content stories each month!

Not a member yet? Click here to Register!

Already a member? Click here to Login!

Subscribe ... for unlimited access!

Individual subscription: $29 for unlimited site access for one year.

Small Business subscription: $140 for unlimited site access for up to 10 members of a company for one year.

Corporate subscription: $300 for unlimited site access for all members of a company for one year.

You may close this dialog after seconds.

Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Comments are moderated and generally will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive. For more information, please see our Comments Policy.

Vote Today

Is the decision to move the Miami show to the Miami Marine Stadium a good one?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...

Search Boats for Sale

Length
Year
Price

Login to Trade Only Today

Lost Password