International Trade Education Programs, sponsored by Port of Los Angeles and Local Maritime Industry Stakeholders, Sparked Students' Interest in Cal Maritime

WILMINGTON, Calif. – February 28, 2007 – Itzel Carranza and Jesse Trujillo, graduating seniors from Banning High School’s Port of Los Angeles International Trade Academy (ITA), have become the school’s first students to be accepted to the California Maritime Academy (Cal Maritime) — the only maritime university on the West Coast.

Cal Maritime, located in Vallejo, Calif., is a specialized campus in the California State University system.  The University offers bachelor’s degrees in business administration, facilities engineering technology, global studies and maritime affairs, marine engineering technology, marine transportation, and mechanical engineering. It is one of only seven degree-granting maritime academies in the United States.

Carranza and Trujillo first became interested in the maritime industry through Banning High’s Global Safety & Security (GSS) Academy, a special program that is part of the International Trade Education Programs (ITEP), a larger program funded in part by the Port of Los Angeles.  GSS educates students about the maritime industry and prepares them for core university curricula while developing their interest in maritime-related college majors.  The program also partners with local maritime businesses and organizations to offer internships to ITEP students.  

 “I never knew about the many career opportunities in the maritime industry until I became involved in the program,” said Carranza. “It was a real eye-opener, and the skills I learned at GSS guided my decision to pursue an education and career in this industry.”

Last summer, Carranza completed an internship at the San Pedro-based Marine Exchange of Southern California, and Trujillo was an intern at the Port of Los Angeles Pilot Station.

Carranza and Trujillo were two of 40 students to attend a special week-long program, underwritten and sponsored by the Metropolitan Stevedore Company in Wilmington, at the California Maritime Academy in 2005.  They learned basic mariners safety training skills, such as firefighting, survival techniques and received information about careers in maritime safety and security.

“I am honored to be accepted to Cal Maritime,” said Trujillo.  “I’ve only had positive experiences at GSS and I look forward to a bright future in the maritime industry.”

Captain Jim Morgan, pilot service manager at the Port of Los Angeles, plays an active role in the GSS program.  He is both a teacher and mentor, assisting his students in filling out college applications and helping them to succeed.

“This is a great group of students,” Capt. Morgan said.  “They live so close to the Port, but many have never been out on the water.  This program brings them into the world of global commerce and opens a new future of career possibilities for them.  I’m so proud of both Itzel and Jesse.  They both have exhibited excellent leadership skills over the last three years in the GSS Academy.  They are a credit to Banning High School and Wilmington, the ‘heart of the harbor’.”

“These young people have been accepted to Cal Maritime because they worked hard and took advantage of the opportunities offered through GSS,” said Carol Rowen, president of ITA. “The vast contributions of our business board of maritime professionals also played a role in the success of the program because these individuals care about the students and mentor them in every aspect of the maritime industry.”

Celebrating its Centennial in 2007, the Port of Los Angeles is America's premier port. As the leading seaport in the nation in terms of shipping container volume and cargo value, the Port generates 259,000 regional jobs and $8.4 billion in annual wages and tax revenues. A proprietary department of the City of Los Angeles, the Port is self-supporting and does not receive taxpayer dollars. At the Port of Los Angeles, high priority is placed on responsible and sustainable growth initiatives, combined with high security, environmental stewardship and community outreach. For its industry leading environmental initiatives, the Port received two Environmental Protection Agency awards in 2006. The Port of Los Angeles – A Cleaner Port. A Brighter Future.