TWENTY-FIVE Guyanese will have the opportunity to pursue studies and training in the maritime sector through the provision of fully-funded scholarships being offered by the Florida-based American Caribbean Maritime Foundation (ACMF).
ACMF announced on Wednesday that it will be partnering with Guyana’s premier maritime training school – the Atlantic Alliance Maritime and Offshore Training Institute (AAMOTI) – to provide scholarships to locals from all 10 administrative regions.
Fifteen of the scholarships will be awarded to residents of Linden, Region 10, while the remaining 10 will be offered to residents from the other nine regions.
Upon successful completion, the students will receive certification in Basic Safety Training (BST) and Ship Security Awareness (SSA).
The move is intended to improve and strengthen capacity-building and development in Guyana’s rapidly expanding maritime and offshore industry.
ACMF was launched in 2016 with the goal of producing a cadre of seafarers and maritime professionals from CARICOM to take up officer, engineering, navigational and other positions in the sector.
To date, the foundation has expended more than US$1 million in scholarships, grants, and equipment to 160 students from Guyana, Jamaica, The Bahamas, Grenada, Trinidad and Tobago, St. Vincent and the Grenadines, and The Dominican Republic.
The foundation is supported by an ‘A’ list of cruise and cargo companies, including Royal Caribbean Cruise Line, MNS Cruise Line, Norwegian Cruise Line, Seaboard, Tropical Shipping, Crowley, Shell, Crowley, among others.
ACMF President, Dr. Geneive Brown-Metzger, said, “ACMF was inspired by President Ali’s remarks at the ACMF 2022 Anchor Awards gala in Florida, when he stressed the critical importance of maritime training and education of locals to the oil/gas sector.”
She continued, “We are committed to partnering with stakeholders to provide opportunity to as many Guyanese as we can.”
Meanwhile, AAMOTI’s Director, Ms Miranda Thakur-Deen said that the institute was delighted to partner with ACMF on this initiative, since it signals the foundation’s commitment to capacity-building for locals and its interest in the development of Guyana’s maritime sector.
Just recently, AAMOTI provided more than 20 scholarships to attendees of its information sessions earlier this year in Regions Two, Six and 10. The school is also partnering with the Office of the First Lady to provide 100 scholarships to women from indigenous villages across the country.
In November of last year, President Dr. Irfaan Ali attended ACMF Anchor Awards Gala at Fort Lauderdale Yacht Club in Florida as the guest of honour, and outlined his government’s ambitious plans for Guyana’s maritime sector. At that event, he met with Dr. Metzger and the two had fruitful discussions.