The national organization of maritime schools in the country, Philippine Association of Maritime Institutions (PAMI), said 48 % of its members are considering to close down their BS Marine Transportation (BSMT) and BS Marine Engineering programs (BSMarE).
This was disclosed by PAMI President Engr. Felix Oca during the virtual symposium held this morning organized by the Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) in connection with the National Maritime Week 2020.
He said that PAMI conducted a survey among its over 70 member maritime higher education institutions MHEIs from August 6 to September 4, 2020.
“(Only) 43 % of (PAMI member) MHEIs are “determined to continue operation” despite the financial challenges brought about by COVID-19 pandemic.
Engr. Oca said the pandemic has impacted on enrollment, finances and employment of MHEIs.
He said that MHEIs are experiencing a 50 % decrease in enrollment; hence, about half of PAMI members are planning to shut down their unsustainable programs.
Due to a significantly lower enrolment, MHEIs are suffering from serious financial problems. Consequently, they are also considering reducing their workforce.
Engr. Oca said their financial woes started last semester. He said that about 80 % of MHEIs had failed to collect tuition fees in the second semester of school year 2019-2020.
“When the lockdown came in last March some schools are still in the second semester, some are still preparing for graduation,” he said.
So as early as the latter part of the last semester, many are already enduring financial problems, he said.