Warner University announced a partnership with the Institute of Marine Technology to start the Marine Technology program on campus in Lake Wales, Florida, pending approval from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

The intent of IMT’s Marine Technology program is to prepare individuals for entry-level technician opportunities in the watercraft industry. Students will be able to pursue two courses of action in the Marine Technology program at Warner University this fall: a certificate program and an associate of Applied Science degree in Marine Technology.

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“With the Marine Industry in dire need of well-qualified technicians this new program was put together by industry veterans with guidance from OEM and aftermarket companies to maximize not only the potential of the program but each individual student,” said IMT in a statement.

“Warner University’s track record is outstanding and it was a natural fit with a new, up-to-date, Marine Technology Program. With direct access to Crooked Lake, a 4,274-acre lake for testing purposes and the might of Warner University behind it, the new program is on track to change the way technicians enter the work force.”

Attendees will not only learn how to work on watercraft and gather hands-on experience, they will work in a real-life marina environment and understand the inner workings of marinas and boat dealerships around the world. Industry experts have already made guest appearances and been signed to the program’s advisory council.

The U.S. Department of Labor reports there will be more than 1.2 million jobs in the diesel, automotive, motorcycle and marine industries in the United States by the year 2024. To reach that total, the transportation industry will have to fill more than 37,000 technician job openings on average every year.*