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How to Become a Certified Marine Diesel Mechanic

May 17, 2018 ·

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From the early European explorers who set sail toward undiscovered lands, to those families hauling boats to a weekend lake getaway, the lure of open waters has captured people’s attention and their imaginations.

If you’re reading this, there’s a good chance that you love the water and the hum of boat engines as well. Maybe you want to turn that love into a career where you can work on boats as a marine diesel mechanic.

You’re in luck.

Unlike those early explorers, there’s a map and a crystal clear route that help you prepare for a career destination.

The Importance of Marine Diesel Mechanics

A marine diesel mechanic is an expert in the maintenance and repair of vital machinery and other important systems that keep a boat running. Whether there’s a stuck fuel rack, a problem with overheating, or any of the myriad of other things that can break down in the mechanical systems of a boat, a diesel mechanic can figure out what the problem is, how to solve it and then fix it.

From the most weather-beaten fishing boat to the shiniest yacht, a marine diesel mechanic keeps them running. Sure, a captain may steer the ship, but a marine diesel mechanic is the one who makes sure it gets out of the harbor (and returns).

Instructor showing boat parts

Do You Need Experience?

Our programs are designed for people with experience working on engines as well as people who have never picked up a wrench. There’s no need to be intimidated if you feel like you won’t live up to expectations. We’re here to teach you everything you need to know to prepare for a career as a marine technician.1

Does having some real-world experience working on boats help when you attend an accredited program? Sure. But it isn’t critical by any means.

One way to get some experience before you enroll in a certified marine diesel engine program is by applying for an apprenticeship. There may be boat dealers, marinas or other watercraft related businesses in your area.

Give them a call or stop by and see if they offer any apprenticeships or entry level positions. And though it may be tough in the beginning, be persistent. You never know when a new opportunity may open up.

Programs like the ones offered at Marine Mechanics Institute (MMI) in Orlando, Florida, can help you prepare for a career as a marine technician no matter your level of experience. All you need is a high school diploma or the equivalent.

What an Education From MMI Could Give You

“If you use the two keys of being proactive and being willing to learn and listen to others in the field who have expertise, it will help you have a successful path to the future,” said David Hart, Training Technology/Curriculum Team Leader for Mercury Marine.

The Marine Mechanics Institute (MMI) in Orlando, Florida will give you the formal education and training you need to become a marine diesel mechanic. We provide 9 weeks of diesel specific training within our 51 week Marine Technician Specialist program, which includes the Diesel 1 & 2 classes, as well as Volvo Penta training.

Through hands-on experience and classroom instruction, you will get the training you need to solve the problems that come up in diesel engine boats. And better still — you’ll only be taking the classes that matter in becoming a marine diesel mechanic.


“The first piece is to take advantage of all the training that’s available, and do that proactively.”

David Hart, Training Technology/Curriculum Team Leader, Mercury Marine


MMI won’t put just any old engines in front of you. You’ll learn about and work on engines from leading manufacturers like Honda Marine, Mercury Marine, Suzuki Marine, Volvo Penta and Yamaha Marine. It’s this type of education and experience that can help you stand out when it’s time to apply for jobs.5

And these partnerships have their own unique benefits, like the one we have with Mercury Marine, which offers students the opportunity to complete online and hands-on training to achieve a provisional Mercury Outboard certification while attending the MMI Marine program.

With more than 50 years of technical training, we know what we’re doing. And we’re here to prepare you with the education you’ll need to compete in the job market.2

Boat Engines sitting in shop

Getting Certified as a Marine Diesel Mechanic

Having education and training as a marine mechanic will help prepare you for pursuing certification. MMI helps give you a foundation that may help you in becoming certified. And before you choose a certification program, make sure you have the skills and prerequisites to enroll.

There’s a number of marine organizations and manufacturers that offer certification programs. Most offer a mix of seminars and coursework, ending with a final exam that will determine if you’ve earned the certificate.

Train to Become a Certified Diesel Mechanic

In just 51 weeks, you could finish the program.

That’s only 357 days. Imagine it. In less than a year you can transform your life.7 Your new workspace could be at a boat dealer or even at a marina. Attending MMI can help you prepare for the life you’ve dreamed about.

So what are you waiting for?

YOU COULD START YOUR EXCITING NEW CAREER AS A MECHANIC OR TECHNICIAN TODAY.
With classes starting every 3-6 weeks, no need to wait to start your career.
Hands-on training. Get hands on experience with the industry's leading brands.
No Pressure to commit. Get answers to your questions without any obligations.
Request More Info Or Call Now 800.834.7308

1) MMI is an educational institution and cannot guarantee employment or salary.

2) For program outcome information and other disclosures, visit www.uti.edu/disclosures.

5) UTI programs prepare graduates for careers in industries using the provided training, primarily as automotive, diesel, collision repair, motorcycle and marine technicians. Some UTI graduates get jobs within their field of study in positions other than as a technician, such as: parts associate, service writer, fabricator, paint and paint prep, and shop owner/operator. UTI is an educational institution and cannot guarantee employment or salary.

7) Some programs may require longer than one year to complete.

Universal Technical Institute of Illinois, Inc. is approved by the Division of Private Business and Vocational Schools of the Illinois Board of Higher Education.

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