The University of Alaska Southeast is teaching a 100 Ton Master License class in Wrangell next week.

It is the first time in many years UAS has offered a marine transportation class in town. Wrangell residents typically have to travel to other communities to take these courses.

Neil Nickerson is an assistant professor for marine transportation at UAS. He said he will teach participants what they need to qualify for a 100 Ton Master License.

“We teach navigation, seamanship, rules of the road, a lot about safety, as well,” Nickerson said. “Survival, and on the water safety: emergency equipment, EPIRBs, life rafts, and so on.”

Nickerson said this license is necessary to captain a commercial vessel up to 100 Gross Tons in size.

“Anything that has a commercial aspect to it where people are paying money, either passengers or a company is doing commercial activity. They need a license to captain, and this class will prepare them to be a licensed captain on these kinds of vessels,” Nickerson said.

Kim Szczatko is a Tech Prep Regional Coordinator for UAS. In an email, she said the two-week class marks the beginning of an effort to offer more UAS classes in Wrangell.

“By successfully making this class happen, I’m hoping to bring more courses into Wrangell so community members can stay in Wrangell to complete Occupational Endorsements, Certificate Programs, and Associate’s Degrees with UAS. I’m trying to show that a need exists in Wrangell for courses so UAS can step in and offer more courses locally in several areas of study,” Szczatko said.

The availability of classes also depends on how many people sign up.

There is still space available in the 100 Ton Master License class that begins Tuesday.