Fisheries and Aquaculture Training Needs Assessment
In December 2020, Congress passed the Young Fishermen’s Development Act (YFDA) “to preserve United States fishing heritage through a national program dedicated to training and assisting the next generation of commercial fishermen.”1 The Act directed the Secretary of Commerce, through the National Sea Grant Office, to establish and administer a program to prepare for the future. In response, the National Sea Grant College program awarded 11 planning grants to state Sea Grant programs to support collaborations with local partners to identify state-wide and community-specific needs for training programs. Maine Sea Grant received one of these grants and worked with the Maine Center for Coastal Fisheries and the Maine Coast Fishermen’s Association to assess training needs for “fishermen, aquaculturists, and seafood sector professionals to enter career paths and make a living supplying seafood from our oceans, coasts, and Great Lakes.”2
The resulting report, Capture and Culture Fisheries of Maine: Training the Next Generation, details their findings.
1U.S. Congress, House, Young Fishermen’s Development Act, HR 1240, 116th Cong., 2nd sess., introduced in House February 14, 2019.
2National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Sea Grant “Food from the Sea” Careers Program: Young Fishermen’s Development Act & Aquaculture Planning Frameworks, 2021.