(SAN PEDRO, Calif. – June 24, 2012) – The Training Ship Golden Bear, the 500-foot training vessel of The California Maritime Academy (Cal Maritime), a campus of The California State University, pulled into the Port of Los Angeles World Cruise Center today.
Onboard are 288 cadets and 57 officers and staff, all of whom are on the final leg of a two-month international training voyage that spanned 8,500 nautical miles and included a transit through the Panama Canal. In addition to transiting the Canal, highlights of the training voyage included ports of call in Costa Rica, Jamaica, and El Salvador, as well as a humanitarian visit to Haiti to deliver medical supplies and money for a children's hospital.
"This training cruise has been one of many firsts – this was our first time to Haiti, first time to Jamaica, and the first time in 73 years that our training ship has visited the port of La Union, El Salvador," said Captain Harry Bolton '78, commanding officer of the TS Golden Bear. "Montego Bay lived up to its reputation as a great tourist destination with gorgeous beaches, great food and fun night life. But it was La Union that won our hearts with an amazing reception, wonderful people and old world charm. It is rare in today’s world to be treated so well."
The Golden Bear's annual training voyage is part of the specialized curriculum offered at Cal Maritime, whose students enjoy a 94 percent job placement rate, and in some cases starting salaries of $60,000 and above. The cruise provides students who are pursuing a U.S. Coast Guard license with the hours of sea experience they need to graduate and work aboard ships of any size worldwide. While at sea, students are responsible for running the ship and maintaining the vessel, all under the supervision of Cal Maritime faculty, the ship’s captain and chief engineer, and a team of experienced mariners.
Southern California Students Take Notice Of Cal Maritime
The trend in enrollment at Cal Maritime has experienced a dramatic shift this year. For the first time in the Vallejo-based campus's history, more new students from Southern California (44%) than Northern California (43%) will be joining Cal Maritime in the fall. More than 250 prospective students and their parents from the Southland will see why their counterparts are taking notice of Cal Maritime by touring the TS Golden Bear while it is in port on Monday, June 25.
“We welcome Cal Maritime to the Port of Los Angeles, and continue to encourage students to pursue education leading to maritime career paths," said Cynthia Ruiz, deputy executive director for the Port of Los Angeles. “Allowing local students to see this vessel up close and personal is just like visiting a college campus. Exposure is key.”
The Golden Bear will remain at the Port of Los Angeles until Wednesday, June 27. It will then make the 363 nautical mile transit north back to the Cal Maritime campus, where it will arrive on Friday, June 29.
ABOUT CAL MARITIME
Established in 1929, The California Maritime Academy, a campus of The California State University, is the only degree-granting maritime academy on the West Coast. Cal Maritime was recently ranked by Forbes magazine as #18 in the “Top 20 Best Value Colleges” in the nation – and the #1 Best Value in California for providing students with the highest quality education for their academic dollar. Located in Vallejo, Calif., the campus serves approximately 900 students and offers undergraduate degrees preparing students for careers in engineering, transportation, international relations, business, and global logistics. It also offers a master’s degree in Transportation and Engineering Management, as well as a number of extended learning programs and courses. For more information about Cal Maritime, visit www.csum.edu.