Crowley Lauds Piney Point Upgrades


September 2015


Back to Issue

The head of SIU-contracted Crowley Maritime recently offered high praise for the union-affiliated Paul Hall Center during an interview with Maritime Executive


Tom Crowley’s appreciation for many of the improvements that have been made under a multi-million dollar renovation project at the at the SIU-affiliated Paul Hall Center for Maritime Training and Education in Piney Point, Maryland, has not diminished since he initially witnessed them earlier this year.


The president and CEO of union-contracted Crowley Maritime Corporation, Crowley visited the school May 5 and served as keynote speaker during the grand opening and dedication ceremony for the new Thomas Crowley Sr. Center for Maritime Services building, an on-campus edifice named in honor of his late father.


Prior to the ceremony, Crowley toured the school and received an up close and personal look at a host of the facility and equipment upgrades that came into fruition from late last year to this spring. He shared his impressions of what he witnessed during a recent interview with Maritime Executive Online, an electronic medium that provides industry leaders with analysis of maritime issues and news affecting the global maritime community.


“Piney Point is kind of the center of their [SIU’s] educational program,” he told his interviewer. “It was built many years ago with the support of employers but clearly put together by the SIU leadership, and they use it as a cornerstone of their efforts to help the industry.


“And I don’t know if you have been to Piney Point lately, or ever, but that is worthy of a story in itself,” he continued. “In addition to the new administration building, they’ve done a tremendous amount of work on the facility including putting in probably the most sophisticated simulator system in the country and, through consultation with us and other employers and after going out and studying what the latest and greatest technology is, they’ve really made a huge investment.”


Focusing specifically on the state-of-the art equipment he saw, Crowley said: “They’ve got three full-bridge simulators and six additional tug simulators to go along with them and they are all interconnected. They’ve got an engine room simulator and a crane simulator.


“It’s a very, very impressive facility,” he continued. “They’ve really upgraded the school, the classrooms and all the technology within those classrooms to give students the latest and greatest.”


Commenting on the building that was named for his father, the Crowley president and CEO said, “…obviously I was very honored to be a part of the dedication of the new building. It replaces an old structure that once housed trainees in the early days of the school and will serve as the administrative center of the campus and be used primarily to train U.S. Merchant Mariners.


“It is part of the SIU’s Paul Hall Center in Piney Point that is committed to providing the nation’s maritime industry with skilled, physically fit, and responsible deep-sea seafarers and inland waterways boatmen.”


When asked about the nature of the historical liaison that exists between the union and his company, Crowley said “… the relationship with the SIU certainly started with my Dad. We’ve managed to continue and expand it, and they’ve really been a key part of our success and also of the success of the entire industry in terms of helping support the Jones Act and making sure that we’re doing the right kind of training and bringing young people into the industry and building careers that otherwise wouldn’t exist.


“So I would say that’s kind of the cornerstone of the relationship. And of course the quality of the people – under the leadership of (SIU President) Mike Sacco and his team – is top notch, and the relationship just continues to grow and build across all of our businesses,” he said. “So it was a great honor for them to dedicate a building there at Piney Point in honor of my father.”


In addition to the upgrades that Crowley saw during his tour, the ambitious renovation project also includes improvements in all roads and walkways, and massive upgrades in the Training and Recreation Center Hotel and auditorium.

Share |