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Boat Building Career and Boat Technician Training Programs with Mercury Marine & ABYC Certifications

great lakes boat building school

Established in 2005, the Great Lakes Boat Building School (GLBBS) offers a quality educational programs designed to teach quality wooden boat building skills and preserve craftsmanship. The only licensed proprietary school of its kind in the state, the GLBBS is housed in a 12,000 square foot waterfront facility - east of the Mackinac Bridge along the northern shore of Lake Huron in the Les Cheneaux Islands - designed and built specifically for the teaching of woodworking, basic design, traditional and modern boat building, and yacht joinery.


GLBBS is centrally located in the Les Cheneaux Islands, which embrace the northern shore of Lake Huron between the St. Ignace / Mackinac Island area and the mouth of the St. Mary’s River. Great Lakes Boat Building School is 35 minute drive from lakes Michigan and Superior.  

GLBBS is a Mercury (Marine) University exclusive school. Through this partnership students receive a certificate from the Mercury M-Tech program and have the option to test for 4 Stroke Maintenance Certification. As an American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC) designated Marine League School, students have the option to test for an ABYC Advisory certifications, as well as other industry credentials.

glbbs campus

Training Programs

Boatbuilding Program




  • Comprehensive Career Boat Building (12 months): The Comprehensive Career Boat Building Program (CCBB) prepares individuals for employment in wooden boat building, restoration, and service settings. Graduates develop well-rounded and adaptable knowledge and skills required in the wooden boat industry. They find employment with boat and yacht manufacturers and maintenance facilities, as well as in high-end woodworking shops. The Comprehensive Career Boat Building program requires 44 semester credits of coursework, including instruction in the classroom and in the shop, hands-on application in supervised lab time in the shop, and team and individual projects in the shop. The program is completed in three 15-week semesters in a 12-month period.

mls boat captain

Boat Technician Program

  • Marine Service Technology (12 months): The Marine Service Technology (MST) Program is designed to prepare individuals who are well-rounded, entry-level marine technicians. Marine technicians work in settings such as marinas, marine dealerships, boat repair yards, marine manufacturing facilities, and yacht clubs. They perform installation and maintenance services on recreational and light commercial boats. The Marine Service Technology program requires 42 credits of coursework, including instruction in the classroom and in the shop, hands-on application in supervised lab time in the shop, and team and individual projects in the shop.  The program is completed in three 15-week semesters in a 12-month period.

Industry Certifications

  • Mercury Marine Certifications: Through an exclusive partnership with Mercury Marine, students are eligible to earn a Mercury Marine technician number and have access to Mercury's online education system to test for maintenance certifications. Mercury and MerCruiser components and systems are used throughout the programs.
  • American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC) Certifications: The School is a member of the American Boat & Yacht Council's Marine League of Schools (ABYC). Graduates are eligible to test for ABYC certifications in Marine Systems, Gasoline Engines, and Diesel Engines.

LAST UPDATED ON Sep 20, 2020