The Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County

LAND-Based Careers

As in many other industries, maritime career paths are often highly varied according to one’s unique circumstances. However, some general guidelines can help you know what to expect and plan accordingly.

In this section, you’ll find brief descriptions of the types of land-based maritime careers available. You can then link to more information on the positions listed—including current hiring trends and approximate wages—by clicking on them.

The types of land-based maritime careers are:

Shipbuilding and Repair
Port Operations
Shore-based Crossover Positions


This area of the industry includes not only the engineering, design and construction of new vessels, but ship repair as well.

This list is not comprehensive.

entry level positions Mid-level positions high-level positions
Construction Laborer Welder Marine Engineer
Ship Fitter Plumber Naval Architect
Rigger Machinist Marine Architect
Painter Electrician Computer Software Engineer
  CNC Machine Operator Computer Hardware Engineer
  Architectural Drafter  
  Construction Supervisor  
  Construction Manager  
  Information Technology Specialist  
  Network Systems Analyst  
  Diesel Mechanic  

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Port is a busy place with a lot of work to be done. Port activities include cargo and passenger loading, unloading and distribution; port security; tugboat guidance; spill cleanup and more. In addition, every large port has at least one shipyard or dry dock facility for ship repair and maintenance.

This list is not comprehensive.

entry level positions Mid-level positions high-level positions
Port Security Officer Welder Marine Engineer
Longshoreman Ship Fitter Naval Architect
Drayage/Harbor Trucker Rigger Marine Architect
Truck and Ship Loaders Painter Chief Executive
Shipping and Receiving Clerk Plumber Port Captain
Order Clerk Machinist Senior Port Captain
Warehouse Worker Electrician Ship Superintendent
Rigger CNC Machine Operator Chartering Manager
  Carpenter Ship Owner/Operator
  Bridge and Lock Tenders Port Manager
  Cargo and Freight Agent Fleet Manager
  Transportation Manager Vessel Traffic Systems Operator
  Storage and Distribution Manager Towboat Pilot
  Marine Cargo Surveyors and Inspectors Docking PilotMooring Master
  Cargo and Freight Agent Harbourmaster
  Ship Agent  
  Freight Forwarder  
  Port Engineer  
  Diesel Mechanic  

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Mariners must do business with many land-based organizations. If you are interested in this field but prefer not to go to sea, consider taking on one of these careers and specializing in the maritime industry.

This list is not comprehensive.

entry level positions Mid-level positions high-level positions
Receptionist Administrative/Executive Assistant Maritime Lawyer
Office Assistant Marine Underwriter Marine Biologist
Shipping and Receiving Clerk Customs Broker Maritime Instructor
Order Clerk Accountant Financial Analyst
Warehouse Worker Information Technology Specialist Cartographer
  Network Systems Analyst Chief Executive
  Public Relations Specialist  
  Human Resources Specialist  
  Operations Manager  

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