"I enrolled in the Marlin Prince’s MVP program on the recommendation of my high school Marine Industry teacher. It proved to be one of the best decisions I have made thus far in my short life. The program itself was both fun and life-altering. With the expertise of Capt. Eddie Morrison and his then first mate and son Travis Morrison, my classmates and I were transformed from novices into professional anglers, marine maintenance specialists, and small-time captains. The exercises conducted ranged from drying the boat, learning to set up lines and waxing to fishing (with the same lines we rigged) and learning to dock the 24’ “little sister” boat the “Marlin etc..” It was a thoroughly fulfilling experience to be able to participate in such a program.
However, it does not end there.
Due to my involvement in the MVP program, I was able to secure multiple jobs in & around the marine industry. Ranging from apprenticing with an experienced marine painter for an extended period of time to a short stint with a veteran marine diesel mechanic. I am currently employed with IGY Marinas American Yacht Harbor, employment which I can say is a direct result of my participation in the MVP program. Prior to enrolling in the MVP program, I had never set foot on a sports fishing boat or any boat except the public ferries. Now I aspire to one day traverse the seas on my own vessel, that is how profoundly the MVP program has influenced my life."
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The United States Virgin Islands is home to some of the best sports fishing in the world. The abundance of fish, the beautiful waters, and the perfect climate draw thousands of visitors each year to enjoy our seas. NBE recognized a need to introduce students on the island of Saint Thomas to the Marine Industry. To fill this void NBE in conjunction with Caribbean Rose and the Virgin Islands Department of Education, established the Marine Vocational Program (MVP) to teach sports fishing skills to high school students on the island of St. Thomas, USVI.
Courses are taught by Captain Eddie Morrison and mate Travis Morrison aboard the Marlin Prince. Captain Eddie Morrison received several prestigious awards in the territory. He was named Honorary Captain of the Year in 2010 by the Atlantic Blue Marlin Tournament. In 2011, he won the First Annual Billfish Tournament. In 2012, he won the Second Annual Billfish Tournament for Haiti. He placed second in the Atlantic Blue Marlin Tournament in 1995 and 2004. In 2005, he placed third in the Atlantic Blue Marlin Tournament.
Several students to date have received certificates for their participation and completion of the course. Interested high school students, on the island of St. Thomas, can contact their Guidance counselor about the program. To view the course description, click here.
For the 2015-2016 season, five high school students received their certification in the course. Their names are Malachi Quetel, Ateyal Gordon, K'Von Joseph, Jamil Berthier, and Davar Carroll. Classes were held on November 7, 2015, November 21, 2015, December 5, 2015, December 19, 2015, January 9, 2016, and January 23, 2016. Graduation was held on March 6, 2016.
On September 6, 2017, category 5 Hurricane Irma devastated the United States Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. On September 20, 2017, another category 5 hurricane, Hurricane Maria, also hit both regions. The Marlin Prince, the boat used for training, was severally damaged. Public schools throughout the territory were also severally damaged. Becuase of this, the 2017-2018 had to be postponed. The MVP (Marine Vocational Program) will be back for the 2018-2019 season. Several past students have benefited from the skills learned from the MVP (Marine Vocational Program). Here is a testimonial from one of our previous students: