How to Become a Marine Architect

Not all marine careers are related to oceanography. Marine or naval architects use their design knowledge to specialize in building structures for the oceans, ranging from small boats to submarines to luxury ocean liners. When you learn how to become a marine architect, you can combine interests in building with marine environments.

Steps

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    Search for a marine career college program that relates to architecture if you are unable to find a suitable marine architecture program. Some related programs include:
    • Applied Marine Physics.
    • Applied Ocean Science.
    • Coastal and Oceanographic Engineering.
    • Coastal Engineering.
    • Naval Architecture.
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    Go the marine engineering route if you prefer. Marine architecture and engineering overlap in many ways. Some marine engineering programs are:
    • Ocean Engineering or Mechanical and Ocean Engineering.
    • Marine Engineering.
    • Naval Engineering.
    • Ocean and Resources Engineering.
    • Physical Ocean Science & Engineering.
    • Water Resources Engineering.
    • Structural Engineering.
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    Earn a college degree. More than 94 percent of marine architects have at least some college and most have a degree.
    • Include mathematics and statistics in your studies.
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    Apply for a job with a private company or with the U.S. military. Marine architects are particularly needed by:
    • United States Coast Guard.
    • United States Navy.
    • Naval Sea Systems Command.
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    Discuss construction data and needs with other marine engineers and architects.
    • Good oral and written communication skills are a must.
    • Technical writing skills are important and include product performance requirements.
    • Teamwork is an integral part of a marine architect's job.
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    Use computers and other technology in marine design.
    • Specialized software is used in drafting and drawing prototypes.
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    Understand physics and marine engineering concepts to incorporate buoyancy and stability factors into designs.
    • These concepts further affect the design of propulsion machinery, piping, heating and ventilation and boiler rooms.
    • Gather and analyze scientific data on the effect of size, draft and displacement.
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    Test designs and build models according to national and international standards.
    • Reading blueprints and other technical drawings with accuracy and comprehension is invaluable.
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    Supervise construction of the building of marine crafts according to marine architecture specifications.
    • Safety and efficiency are key concepts for those working in marine or naval architecture.
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    Take the Professional Engineer Review Course (PERC) offered by the Society of Naval Architects & Marine Engineers (SNAME) if you plan on pursuing Professional Engineer (P.E.) licensure.
    • The PERC course is offered only once per year, but 98 percent of those who take the course pass the P.E. exam.
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    Pursue a graduate degree in a marine engineering or architecture if you are interested in teaching or research and development.

Tips

  • If you pursue marine engineering studies, make certain the program is ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology) accredited.

Article Info

Categories: Architecture and Design Occupations