Tourism Training for Waterman
Free workshop for working watermen on Virginia’s Middle Peninsula to be held at Rappahannock Community College’s Glenns Campus in November.
Rappahannock Community College’s Office of Workforce Development will offer a four-day workshop for working watermen interested in developing additional revenue streams through tourism.
The workshop will be held Nov. 12 – 14 from 3 to 7 p.m. and Saturday, Nov. 16 from 9 a.m. to noon.
The evening classroom courses will cover how to establish a tourism business, marketing your tourism business, local resources you can draw on for business support at little to no cost and developing unique experiences for tourists about watermen’s heritage, local history and Chesapeake Bay health.
The Saturday course will include on-water demonstrations and themes.
Tourism is among the top economic drivers in American coastal communities, according to SeaGrant.
Showcasing how commercial watermen can use their skills to celebrate local maritime heritage, not only helps, as SeaGrant writes, “promote local pride and stewardship while fostering community development,” but also provides another way for commercial waterman to earn an income on the Chesapeake Bay.
Coastal tourism programs in other regions have included sight seeing tours of Chesapeake Bay landmarks and the waterman experience, where guests come on board and learn to work the water and gaining a deeper appreciation for how local seafood is harvested.
A limited number of applicants will also be provided with opportunities to obtain their U.S. Coast Guard Captain’s License at the Chesapeake Marine Training Institute (CMTI) in Gloucester, Va. Grant funding has been provided to offset the costs to obtain training and take the exam.
CMTI’s Captain’s Course is divided into three sections, including rules of the road, basic navigation and the four examinations needed to earn the Coast Guard license.
Its instructors are seasoned mariners, holding a current Coast Guard Master license with a minimum of five years at sea experience. CMTI’s staff also includes License Consultants, trained by the Coast Guard’s National Maritime Center as Mariner Credentialing Agents, who serve as experts to help each mariner sail smoothly through their licensing application process.
Registration and a short application is required: http://www.rappahannock.edu/workforce/the-chesapeake-heritage-program/.