Vocational School Teaches Boating Skills
Camdenton's Lake Career and Technical Center's Marine Service Technology Program teaches students basic boating skills.
"We get all kinds of stuff, wave runners, outboards and stuff like that," explained student Shane Smitherman. "Just learning is what we mostly do."
The 30 high school students work with the latest technology donated from Mercruiser and Volvo Pinta.
"We get a theory and lesson in the classroom," said Tim Keeney, a marine technology teacher. "And then they come into the shop and apply it to what they've learned in the classroom."
Students don't just work on donated boats. Lake of the Ozarks area residents also bring their own vessels.
"Our teacher sometimes assigns us engines to work on," explained student Rusty Williams. "And he'll cause problems on them and then we'll come by and fix them and do diagnostic tests and all that stuff."
Students do everything from running an estimate, ordering the parts, and returning the repaired boat to the customer. Students learn about their own watercraft, too.
"I get to bring all of my stuff in and work on them and fix them," said Williams. "So every weekend when I break like a pull start or something, I can bring it in."
Williams added, "I have all the tools here. We have work benches, and it's much easier to do it here than it is at home."
Although he always hopes to live near water, Williams doesn't want to repair boats as a career.
"I don't want to be a mechanic," he said. "I just want to drive boats. But you have to know all about them."
The Marine Service Technology Program includes an adult program. If you're interested, call the Lake Career and Technical Center at 573-346-9272.