San Jacinto College, Texas A&M to host National Maritime Conference

The following is text of a news release from San Jacinto College:

(PASADENA, Texas) — San Jacinto College and the Texas A&M Maritime Academy will host the Shared Quarters National Maritime Conference on June 5-6. The conference will bring together industry professionals and educators from across the country to focus on the expansion of the maritime industry and efforts to incorporate community colleges for the training of the maritime work force.

Rep. Gene Green, Chairwoman Janiece Longoria with Port Houston, Jeff Brandt with the National Maritime Center, and Dr. Shashi Kumar and Kevin Tokarski with the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration (MarAd) will be among the guest speakers. Longoria will serve as the conference's keynote speaker. 

Longoria is an honors graduate of the University of Texas and received her juris doctor degree from the University of Texas School of Law. She has served as the chairwoman of the Port of Houston Authority since she was unanimously appointed by the city of Houston and county of Harris in 2013. Longoria chairs the Port Commission’s Audit Committee, Community Relations Committee and serves on the Governance Committee and Pension and Benefits Committee. She also created the Citizens Advisory Council to foster open communication between communities in and around the Port of Houston and the Port Commission. Longoria is also a regent for the University of Texas System that oversees the flagship University of Texas at Austin, as well as eight other academic institutions and six health care institutions including MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston.

San Jacinto College will host the first day on June 5 at the Maritime Technology and Training Center on the Maritime Campus in La Porte, Texas. The Texas A&M Maritime Academy will host the second day on June 6 at its Galveston, Texas, campus. In addition to guest speakers, the conference will include panel discussions on the topics of innovative workforce programs, college alignments with the maritime industry, and the Domestic Maritime Centers of Excellence program. 

In 2017, U.S. Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives voted to approve Domestic Maritime Centers of Excellence legislation as part of the FY 2018 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). The legislation authorizes federal support for two-year community and technical colleges, allowing the colleges to expand their capacity to train domestic maritime workers by admitting more students, training faculty, expanding facilities, creating new maritime career pathways from associate degree to baccalaureate degree programs, and awarding credit for prior learning experience, including military service.

To register for the Shared Quarters Maritime Conference and to find out more about presenters and details, visit

By Professional Mariner Staff