Students learning rigging fall arrest

Bridge Watch Rating Program

The Bridge Watch Rating gets you the skills to start a nautical career aboard commercial vessels.

Program at a glance



Area of Study

Technologies & Engineering

Trades & Apprenticeship

Study options


Work experience


Open to International



17 weeks

At a glance image

Bridge Watch program cohort

Begin your Career at Sea!

Applications for the next intake are due by June 15, 2022

How to apply

Indigenous people and women who are Canadian citizens or Permanent Residents are invited to participate in the fully-funded Bridge Watch Rating program to learn and enhance seamanship skills, earn nationally-recognized certifications, and embark upon an exciting, entry-level career in the Marine industry. Hear from experienced sailors, take field trips, practice hands-on techniques, undertake a practicum at sea, and earn a Transport Canada Certificate. Marine-based employers are excited to hire our graduates!

Transport Canada OPP BCIT logos

Supported by Transport Canada and OPP (Oceans Protection Plan), and via a partnership with BCIT,  Camosun’s Bridge Watch Rating program provides a pathway for you to enter into rewarding marine sector careers. You’ll learn the essential knowledge and skills related to the practice of seamanship, navigation, standards of safe working procedures, and the hazards associated with the marine environment.

A Camosun Success Story

Richard Watts, a recent graduate from the Bridge Watch Rating program, talks about his experience with the program.

Train on a Variety of Marine Vessels

The program is designed to provide entry-level personnel with base-level knowledge of seamanship to prepare for a career at sea with:

  • BC Ferries
  • Canadian Coast Guard
  • local tug operators
  • cruise ships
  • deep-sea vessels, and more.

In addition to working on commercial vessels, career opportunities exist for:

  • water-based ecotourism
  • commercial fishing
  • sport fishing
  • travel
  • other recreational marine guiding roles


    Richard Watts, a recent graduate from the Bridge Watch Rating program, steers the "Adventure" out of dock in Prince Rupert.

    “Yesterday I was able to check off one of my lifelong goals. I took the helm for the first time and steered the "Adventure" out of dock in Prince Rupert as we made way to Klemtu.”

    Get the Skills You Need to Begin a Career at Sea

    Training covers the hands-on skills and coursework required by Transport Canada for employment. Over 17 weeks (depending on electives) this full-time program is based on three modular courses designed to prepare you for a career in the marine industry.

    Gain hands-on skills and knowledge in:

    • Keeping a lookout
    • Steering the vessel
    • Operating communication systems
    • Anchoring and mooring
    • Responding to emergencies
    • Basic environmental protection procedures
    • Assisting in cargo operations
    • Handling ropes and chains

    Earn Nationally Recognized Training Certificates

    • Transport Canada Bridge Watch Rating Training Certificate
    • Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System (WHMIS 2015)
    • Restricted Operator’s Certificate – Maritime Commercial (ROC – MC) 
    • Small Vessel Operator Proficiency (SVOP)
    • Marine Basic First Aid Certificate (MBFA)
    • STCW Basic Safety Training (BST)
    • STCW Proficiency in Survival Craft (PSC)

    Curriculum & courses

    Program Cost

    • All tuition, books, and course materials are provided.
    • Lunch or lunch funds are provided for all students for each day a student is on campus
    • Bus passes for travel within the greater Victoria area are provided
    • Students who must relocate to attend training will receive accommodation and meals for the time that they are away from home.

    Costs not covered:

    • Rent/mortgage
    • Vehicle payments and insurance
    • Groceries
    • Child/elder/pet care
    • Phone and internet
    • Extended health care

    Program Start

    Multiple start dates are available throughout the year. The course is offered at Camosun College in Victoria with supplementary training at BCIT in North Vancouver. Contact for more details on dates, locations, and entrance requirements, or to apply for the Bridge Watch Rating program.

    Applications for the next intake are due by June 15, 2022!

    How to apply

    Contact for more details.

    Class hours: 8:30am-4pm, Monday - Friday


    Our Teaching Staff

    Camosun College is fiercely proud of the excellent quality of its instruction. Our teaching staff are experienced, inspiring and supportive of our students’ individual journeys.

    Faculty/staff profile

    Captain Morteza Peivast

    Capt. Morteza Peivast

    Program Lead

    Faculty/staff profile

    Captain Rick Worral

    Capt. Rick Worrall


    Faculty/staff profile


    Capt. Michael Toevs


    Faculty/staff profile

    Cindy Drover-Davidson

    Cindy Drover-Davidson

    Program Coordinator

    Born and raised on Newfoundland's West Coast, Cindy gradually made her way across the country to Victoria. At every stop through the country, Cindy ta ...

    Read more

    female standing in bridge

    A career at sea!

    Get the skills to start a nautical career aboard commercial vessels.

    How to apply

    Contact information

    Bridge Watch Rating Program