Since 1923, Crawford Nautical School has been helping seamen advance in their maritime careers. For the first seventy or so years, we concentrated on readying mariners for rigorous credential examinations. These exams were primarily essay, occasionally oral and always difficult. In those days, the license candidate arrived at the examination room in a coat and tie and spent anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks “writing” the exams. Eventually the USCG adopted the multiple-choice format for testing, which shortened the length of the testing ordeal. As the question banks were not yet available to the public though, the tests were still tough.
About thirty years ago, all of the questions were published. While this certainly reduced mariners’ anxiety a bit, memorizing hundreds of questions and answers placed considerable strain on the synapses. Then the question banks were removed from public availability. A few years later, they were restored to public viewing. Now they are once again unavailable. Throughout it has been our mission to prepare students for examination by insuring they understand the topic — through teaching it. This, it turns out, is the shortcut.
For many years now we have been offering, in addition to license preparatory classes, pilot training and approved Coast Guard courses for certain licenses and endorsements, both National and STCW. We expect to be offering the full array of STCW courses for the OICNW, some OICEW and many of the STCW management level courses beginning January 2019.
Finally, we offer Credential Assistance to mariners trying to determine what license or rating to shoot for or needing help with clarifying and/or resolving problems with the National Maritime Center.