Delaware County Community College Honored as Center of Excellence in Maritime Workforce Training

Delaware County Community College

MEDIA, PA — In a significant accolade for its maritime training programs, Delaware County Community College (DCCC) has been recognized by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration (MARAD) as one of the 2024 Centers of Excellence for Domestic Maritime Workforce Training and Education (CoE). This prestigious designation places DCCC among an elite group of 32 institutions nationwide, spotlighting its role in preparing students for careers in the critical and expansive maritime industry.

The CoE recognition spotlights the vital contribution of DCCC to the maritime sector, both in terms of economic strength and national security. Maritime Administrator Ann C. Phillips commended the institution for its outstanding record in producing graduates who have significantly contributed to the maritime industry, reflecting the high caliber of education and training provided at DCCC.

This designation opens up new avenues for DCCC, including enhanced opportunities for student and faculty recruitment, improvements to facilities, and the possibility of receiving surplus equipment or temporary use of MARAD vessels. Furthermore, it acknowledges the potential for students to receive credit for military service, bridging the gap between military and civilian maritime workforce entry.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg emphasized the importance of a skilled mariner workforce for the country’s economy and security. He pointed out that the Centers of Excellence, including DCCC, will play a pivotal role in promoting maritime careers beyond traditional four-year degree paths, thereby expanding access to these critical professions.

“Our country depends on a highly skilled mariner workforce to strengthen both our economy and our national security,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. “The 32 Centers of Excellence we’re designating will promote training opportunities outside of traditional four-year degree programs and will bring more Americans into these great maritime careers.”

DCCC’s history of collaboration with the Philadelphia maritime industry is notable, offering a range of education, training, and apprenticeship opportunities in fields such as welding, shipbuilding, and logistics. Notably, the college’s welding program is offered free of charge to students through a partnership with Philly Shipyard, Inc., underscoring DCCC’s commitment to accessible maritime education.

College President Dr. Marta Yera Cronin expressed pride in the institution’s enduring partnerships across business, industry, and community sectors. These collaborations have not only benefited thousands of students but also contributed significantly to the Greater Philadelphia region’s economic and workforce development.

“Over the years the College has forged many solid partnerships with business and industry, union, federal, state and community leaders to the benefit of thousands of students and the Greater Philadelphia region,” noted Dr. Cronin. “We are proud to once again receive this designation.”

The CoE designation is authorized under Section 51706 of Title 46 United States Code, which allows the Secretary of Transportation to recognize entities that excel in maritime workforce training and education. MARAD’s recognition of Delaware County Community College as a Center of Excellence reaffirms the college’s impact on preparing a new generation for the maritime industry, ensuring the sector remains robust and competitive on both a national and global scale.

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