Page 29: of Maritime Logistics Professional Magazine (Q1 2012)

Training & Maritime Security

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At the Maritime Professional Training (MPT) facility locat- ed in Fort Lauderdale, FL, Project 2010 ? a journey intended as a means to update a wide range of MPT courses, enhance the learning experience and provide cost effective training to students ? is well underway and already yielding fruit. In busi- ness for more than 29 years, the privately held, 65,000 square foot Maritime Training Center and ISO 9001:2008 certi Þ ed company has since added another $1.5 million USD to fur- ther enhance its training, evaluation and assessment missions. Eventually, the total expenditures to make ?Project 2010 and Beyond? a reality will top $5 million. MPT hopes to Þ nish all of this in time for their 30th anniversary. S.M.A.R.T. MPT?s simulation facility, aptly named the S.M.A.R.T. Campus,conducts Simulation for Maritime Assessment Re- search and Training and has long provided to the maritime in- dustry a variety of regulatory compliance courses in addition to research projects for port development and familiarization training. Project 2010 upgrades will include the installation of fourth Full Mission Ship Simulator Bridge designed for Advanced Dynamic Positioning and AHTS training, an addi- tional state-of-the-art ECDIS lab and a new DP Lab for both Basic and Advanced Course offerings. Almost 30 years after its inception, MPT nevertheless begins this decade as one of the most technologically advanced maritime training facilities in North America. MPT?s current package of simulation equipment is ? in a word ? impressive. This includes 3 full mission simulators, each capable of acting interactively or independent of one an- other and also featuring tug simulation, as well. Unit numbers 2 and 3 emulate tugs in conventional, ASD, or z-drive modes and include winch controls. Rounding out the facility?s train- ing capabilities are 8 partial task radar simulators, 4 partial units with radars and screens, 12 ECDIS training stations with Transas technology and 6 simulators for DP operators. Beyond this, and at no more than 6 month intervals, components are upgraded as necessary. Partly a function of the Project 2010 initiative, these improvements extend companywide: labora- tories, classrooms, welding and everything else in between. At the heart of MPT?s current and future training initiatives is (Captain) Ted Morley, Chief Operations Of Þ cer of the Fort Lauderdale-based school. In addition to his normal duties, he is also in charge of Marine Simulation Training Facility?s design, construction, implementation, and operation. Despite that demanding schedule, Morley still Þ nds time to go to sea in a professional role, something he says keeps him current with industry trends and allows him to bring back real life experience to MPT?s clients. Morley?s career includes time spent onboard vessels ranging from super yachts to super tankers, during which he worked his way up from deckhand to Master. He currently holds a USCG Master?s License, Unlimited Tonnage as well as sev- eral foreign certiÞ cates and is currently pursuing his Master?s Degree in Marine Education. And, as if that wasn?t enough, he actively participates in maritime advisory committees in the U.S. as well as overseas and he has authored several articles and papers on Maritime Training and Ship Safety. Recently, he (and MPT) were a much sought after source of expertise by a wide range of media as they covered the Costa Concordia incident.REALISM ? AND REALITY The MPT equipment upgrades include an effort to ensure themost realistic simulation possible. Fed with Þ ber optic lens, each channel has its own CPU. The installation features newly upgraded F32 Projectors that supply up to 8000 lumens each projected onto a120? (36.5m) curved screen to provide a visually immersive environment that greatly improves on direct-view displays. The upgraded installation will also feature Projection Design?s patented Multi Image Processors supplying image adjustments at the pixel level, which provides a level of realism unmatched in other display solutions. As MarPro goes to press, those upgrades were being completed. The real- ism and sensation of motion are dramatic. Bring your sea legs. The real-life look and feel to MPT?s offering is particular- ly important, especially since Ted Morley and his staff fully embrace the concept of ?performance based training.? He explains, ?At MPT we mandate performance-based training that provides for not only regulatory compliance but we also demand performance from students. People can and do fail classes. Everyone who comes here knows that they will not be certiÞ cated unless they achieve the required skills.? MPT, therefore, is anything but a for-pro Þ t diploma mill. All students start their experience at MPT by seeing their full-time, on site career counselor, who guides mariners to the right classes, for the right reasons. And the curriculum is as adaptable as it is wide. Morley explains, ?If a client has a need, then we can move forward quickly without bureaucracy and restraints of a school board or perhaps legacy union over- sight. Everyone at MPT is a mariner (except for the CFO) and everyone is certi Þ cated and some still actively sail on their licenses. Our part time mariner instructors bring real world experience to the classroom.? Last year alone, more than 10,000 students attended training through MPT. The facility also hosts many unique training programs providing special- ized training and assessment tailored to meet individual and corporate standards.As a function of its favorable geographic location, state-of- the-art equipment and experienced instructors, MPT enjoys a diverse, but balanced client base. Morley says that about 60 percent of their business stems from corporate clients with the rest, private individuals right off the street. Those clients in- clude shipping companies, harbor pilots, towing and offshore | Maritime Professional | 29

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