The Boat School Operating Under
New Ownership

The country’s longest-running boatbuilding program
is now accepting students for their 2012 construction and
2013 mechanics programs.


The Boat School campus. The boatbuilding curriculum is set up so that all students take the same courses the first semester and then break off into either composites or wood. If they choose to return for the second year they will not only take a diverse curricula but can either stay with advanced wood or advanced composites or take which ever construction they did not take the first year. We have truly allowed the student full flexibility. They have reinstated the co-op experience, eight weeks in an approved boatbuilding operation, as part of the curriculum. The school is accepting boat donations (serviceable condition) and they are tax deductible.

The Boat School is on schedule to complete its separation from Husson College in May 2012. The Boat School’s facility, Maine’s Marine Technology Center, is now wholly owned and operated by the independent nonprofit corporation Friends of the Boat School. Classes are remaining uninterrupted during the transition, and students are now being accepted for The Boat School’s 2012-2013 academic-year programs. Moving forward, The Boat School will continue to offer its Wooden Boat Building and Composites Boat Building vocational courses, and will add a much-anticipated Marine Mechanics program beginning in fall of 2013.

This year’s graduating class will be the last under Husson College. The core of the courses will remain unchanged for the incoming class this September. Students learn lofting, construction, finishing techniques, communications and math for business, and basic systems such as electrical and corrosion. All students also participate in a work co-op during which they spend eight weeks employed in an approved boat shop, repair facility or yard. Graduates receive a certificate in either Wooden Boat Building or Composite Boat Building, and they have the opportunity to continue into a second-year curriculum in either Wood or Compositing Boat Building or in Marine Mechanics. Prospective students should contact The Boat School immediately to secure spots in the 2012-2013 programs.

“We’re very pleased with how smoothly the transition with Husson has gone,” says Bret Blanchard, director of Maine’s Marine Technology Center. “We appreciate Husson’s contribution to our program for the past few years, and we’re proud to move forward independently. The basic operations are unchanged, the quality of the curriculum remains high and the Eastport community is very supportive.”

The Boat School, which has been providing marine vocational education since 1969, operates out of its oceanfront facility on nine acres in Eastport, Maine. The school has a 60-ton Travelift, advanced construction equipment, and a working waterfront. Ownership of the property was transferred to Friends of The Boat School in December 2011.

The Friends of The Boat School is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation that offers guidance and support to the educational institution. Members include residents of Eastport and industry professionals. By assuming ownership of the school’s facility, the Friends of the Boat School will ensure that The Boat School’s operations are all of the highest standards necessary to train a new marine industry workforce.

The Boat School’s partnership with Husson College of Bangor, Maine, began in 2007. Husson’s support grew the class size to 35 students. Following the retirement of Husson President William Beardsley, the private college decided to refocus its efforts on its degree-granting programs, and announced it would sever ties with The Boat School.

In addition to its yearlong intensive programs, The Boat School also offers continuing education classes for marine industry professionals. Evening, weekend and seasonal courses provide certifications through American Boat Builders and Repairers Association (ABBRA), American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC) and American Composite Manufacturers Association (ACMA).

About The Boat School

The Boat School is the longest-running boatbuilding educational institution in the United States. Located in Eastport, Maine, the school was established in response to the marine industry’s need for a well-trained workforce. The Boat School began in 1969 as a vocational school in Calais, Maine, and moved first to Lubec, and then to Eastport in 1978. Independently owned by the nonprofit corporation, Friends of The Boat School, the institution currently receives no public funding, however it welcomes tax-deductible donations through its website. One-year courses currently offered include Wooden Boat Building, Composite Boat Building. Many students choose to complete a second year either of those programs or, beginning in 2013, Marine Mechanics. More information is available online at


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