What You Need to Know before Studying Marine Engineering Abroad

If you are thinking about studying marine engineering abroad, here is a list of the things you need to know including top schools worldwide.

As a marine engineer, you have a promising career ahead. 

Militaries, commercial ships, and maritime companies need ships that are environmentally-friendly, and this need continues to drive the demand for naval architects and marine engineers. To develop the skills you need to be successful, it's important to find a reputable marine engineering school.

According to the U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics, the demand for marine engineers and naval architects is forecasted to grow at a 12-percent rate between 2016 and 2026. This rate is faster than average in the United States and expected to add 1,000 jobs for future marine engineers over a decade.

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You can find several sought-after engineering schools that offer a marine engineering degree or a related degree program, but not all engineering schools are created equally.

Here are some of the best schools for future marine engineers across the globe and some important points to consider when choosing one.

What should you consider in a marine engineering school?

If you want to pursue a marine engineering degree abroad, it's important to consider several factors. One of the first aspects to look into when you're applying to an engineering program is whether or not it offers the degree you need.

Typically you'll need to earn a bachelor's degree if you want to become a marine engineer. That's because most marine engineers need to earn an undergraduate degree at the bachelor's level to get a job as a marine engineer.

Moreover, your degree program should offer a degree in marine engineering or a related degree, such as ocean engineering, electrical engineering, or mechanical engineering.

What You Need to Know before Studying Marine Engineering Abroad
Source: Suriyapong Thongsawang/iStock

Even some of the oldest engineering schools around the world that have helped shape the field of engineering offer similar marine engineering degree programs. For instance, TU Braunschweig, The Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Technische Universität Dresden, Technical University of Denmark and the Leibniz University Hannover all offer a degree program in mechanical engineering or electrical engineering.

You'll also want to consider the school’s accreditation. Accreditation matters because it helps employers know that you received a sound education that prepares you to work as a professional in the field.

The ABET accredits engineering schools in the United States and around the world. Schools that pass the ABET’s high standards and achieve accreditation delivers a quality education that prepares students for a career as a marine engineer, so it's worth considering engineering schools that offer ABET-accredited degree programs.

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Marine engineers require a profound technical skillset to take care of several requirements of the job, such as designing and building ships, preparing technical reports and inspecting the machinery. So, it's important to look for a school that offers the degree program that can help you get a job as a marine engineer, such as ABET-accredited schools.

What You Need to Know before Studying Marine Engineering Abroad
Source: GOERGE DESIPRIS/Pexels

It's also important to consider the class size and support systems the school has in place. With a smaller class size, you typically can get more opportunities for one-on-one time with your professor. Academic and career support is also crucial in improving your chances for success to complete your degree program and obtain a job as a marine engineer.

Marine engineers need to have good math and communication skills. So, an academic writing center and advanced math tutoring services for subjects, such as calculus or trigonometry, help support your education as you study your degree abroad.

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It may also be important to consider whether or not the program offers courses in the language you speak or language services to ensure there are little or no language barriers as you pursue your studies.

Which top schools offer a marine engineering degree or courses for undergraduates?

Several programs exist that offer future marine engineers a sound education at the undergraduate level. Some top programs are available at ABET-accredited schools, such as the Universidad Nacional de Ingeniería (Peru), the Arab Academy for Science and Technology and Maritime Transport (Egypt), the University of New Orleans (U.S.) and the United States Merchant Marine Academy (U.S.).

Here are a few more top schools across the globe that offer an undergraduate marine engineering degree:

  • University of Tasmania (Australia) — If you want to study in Australia, the University of Tasmania offers an interesting degree program for aspiring marine engineers. The school offers specialized degree programs at the undergraduate level for future marine engineers, including a bachelor of applied science degree programs in nautical science, marine electrical engineering and marine engineering.

  • South Tyneside College (United Kingdom)  If you’re considering studying in the United Kingdom, then it’s worth exploring South Tyneside College. The school offers an apprenticeship program and certifications for a variety of positions, including courses to prepare you for a role as part of the port or deck crew of a naval ship.

  • Escuela Superior Politecnica del Litoral (Ecuador) — This ABET-accredited marine engineering school offers a bachelor's degree in naval engineering. The school also has a student-run club to help support your career as a future marine engineer.

What are some of the best marine engineering schools offering graduate degrees around the world?

If you want to continue your studies as a marine engineer, you can explore a wide selection of graduate programs. The United States offers a wide variety of schools offering graduate and professional degrees, such as Texas A&M Maritime Academy, Maine Maritime Academy and Massachusetts Maritime Academy, which also offers marine engineering degree programs that provide experiential courses abroad and preparation for professional licenses. 

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You can also find quality programs around the world. For instance, future marine engineering students can pursue their engineering degrees in India at the India Maritime University---formerly known as the Marine Engineering and Research Institute (MERI). As one of India’s popular engineering schools, the India Maritime University offers specialized degrees, including a master’s degree in technical marine engineering and management.

The Arab Academy for Science, Technology and Maritime Transport in Egypt also offers a master’s degree with courses in advanced computational methods, advanced marine hydrodynamics, structural design and other courses to help you further develop your skills.

Other renowned schools that offer graduate programs include the Delft University of Technology (the Netherlands) and the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (Norway), which offers an English-taught master’s degree program in marine technology.

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Final thoughts

As an aspiring marine engineer, it's important that you learn the skills you need to help you get the job. That's why it's even more important to find a marine engineering school that offers the degree program you seek and one that is accredited and ranked for its program expertise.

You can use this guide as a starting point to find reputable engineering schools. Just think about the services and support you need, and you can find the ideal degree program at a reputable marine engineering school that's right for you.

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Nader Mowlaee is an Electronics Engineer, working as an Engineering Career Coach and Technical Recruiter since 2012. Nader is inspired by motivating confidence in engineers and helping job seekers take calculated actions to move towards their career goals. Nader’s mission is to enable engineers to break away from their fears and create the ideal career they want. He helps engineers strengthen their Communication, Personal Branding, and Networking skills, resulting in job interviews and job offers fast. You can contact Nader on LinkedIn.