Associate Degree in Boat Mechanics

Associate's degree programs for prospective boat mechanics provide the knowledge and skills needed to repair and maintain boats. These programs have a strong technical and hands-on component.

Essential Information

Students in a boat mechanics program gain comprehensive training and knowledge in areas such as inboard and outboard repair, American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC) engine construction standards, electronics, drive systems, internal combustion engine repair and transmissions.

Students can enhance their career prospects through professional internships, which might be required as part of the core curriculum. Applicants to these programs must hold at least a high school diploma or its equivalent. A postsecondary education might not be required for positions in this field, but it might be preferred by employers. Program fields include marine technology, marine service technology, and small engine technology.

Associate Degree in Boat Mechanics

In addition to learning about technical areas, students may also gain training in communications, customer service and safety. Particular professional skills that students may acquire include the abilities to correctly wire pumps, repair stern drive units, shrink wrap marine vessels and troubleshoot ignitions. These degree programs also entail rigorous physical activities, such as climbing ladders, lifting heavy objects and equipment, kneeling and walking.

Coursework may include subjects like:

  • Marine service
  • Electricity fundamentals
  • Marine drive systems
  • Basic engines and fuel systems
  • Marine rigging

Employment Outlook and Salary Info

Graduates of this program may go on to find employment repairing a variety of vehicles, including motorboats, motorcycles and snowmobiles. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), jobs for motorboat mechanics and service technicians were expected to increase by 4 percent from 2014-2024 ( In 2015, these mechanics and service technicians earned a median annual salary of $38,280, according to the BLS.

Continuing Education Information

Marine and small engine mechanics may be required to complete continuing education courses administered by small engine and equipment distributors or manufacturers, as dictated by their employer. These courses are typically designed to train workers to repair and maintain new models.

Associate degree programs incorporating boat mechanics train students in marine drive systems, marine rigging, electricity fundamentals, and more. Graduates can typically find employment in related areas of vehicle mechanics, though some employers may require continuing education courses.

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