Frequently Asked Questions

What type of men and women take this program to enter the drilling industry?

Since our inception May of 2000 Maritime Drilling Schools Limited has registered and trained thousands of individuals from all over the world.  The types of men and women entering this industry with successful outcomes are General Labourers, Ex-Military / Veterans, Trades people, University Graduates / Students, Engineers, Administrative, Teachers, Supply and Service Personnel, Heavy Equipment Operators and Truck Drivers and any person who feels they can take up the challenges of meeting this industries demands.  All of these men and women have opportunities to provide a service to the drilling industry.  Our graduated students can be found working on Land Rigs, Jack ups, Semi Submersibles, Platforms, Service and Supply like Haliburton, Schlumberger, Brown and Root, National Oilwell Varco just to name a few. With the worldwide shortage in this industry and the babyboomers retiring the opportunities are enormous with many people changing their occupations to capitolize on this industry.   

What should I know about this Industry before I register with your school?

First and foremost you need to make sure this is the industry for you!  I recommend you thoroughly do your research and know what you are getting into before you start.  I will list some aspects of this industry that you should be aware of:

1.) You will be required to have a good work ethic.

2.) The initial shock of individuals not being mentally and physically prepared can cause exhaustion due to long hours and physical demands. 

3.) This job may require you to be away from home for periods of 1 week to 4 weeks at a time depending on your work location domestically or internationally.

4.) You will require a drivers licence and if driving company vehicles, an abstract.

5.) Having a vehicle is an asset as you may need to get yourself to the job site.

6.)  Having a trade, experience or education in the following: Mechanical, Electrical, Welding, Hydraulics, Heavy Equipment Operator, Truck Driver, Instrumentation, Engineering etc. is considered an asset by most companies.

7.)   Employers have said this program puts employee's years ahead and recognize this program as equivalent to an individual with experience.



What does this Drilling Operations Program offer for my money that other programs do not?

This program offers an in-depth knowledge covering all aspects of drilling.  Students also focus on their skills through classroom lectures and oral testing.


Does Maritime Drilling Schools Limited assist with finding employment?

The school provides students with access to employer's locations and phone numbers located around the world.  Employers sometimes seek our students through the school and we pass this information onto students.  We are not employers and don't provide you with a job as this is between the student and employer.  How you search for employment will make that difference and most employers like to see you face to face. Locating yourself where the hiring is done gives you greater opportunity to be hired.  When employers are looking for employees is because someone quit or was fired and the rig is working shorthanded.  So when this happens they need somebody ASAP and someone who would be close to the jobsite. You should take a look at the student testimonials and it will give you an idea of the opportunities and successes. Students who send in applications by mail or internet can expect a processing time of up to 4 to 6 weeks or longer for a reply. 

Do all drilling contractors recognize your certifications?

Some drilling contractors have their own safety or industry training programs that are company specific.  Companies have the right to implement their own safety and industry programs to meet corporate policy and not, because they do not recognize our programs.  Additional training in these programs adds to your personal education.  As a training provider we cannot train you rig specific, as this can only be done once you arrive at the worksite. There are many types of drilling rigs out there from conventional to newer generation rigs, which provide computer automated robotics.  The newer generation rigs are classified as cyber drilling rigs, which provide a safer and more attractive working environment for the men and women looking for a career in this industry.  The older conventional rigs are more labour intensive versus cyber drilling rigs, which require more maintenance.

Does age make a difference in this industry and do drilling contractors hire older employees?

We have students of all ages taking taking our professional training programs and getting hired.  The industry requires a certain amount of maturity for their experience and work ethic.

Do women have opportunities on drilling rigs or is it still male dominated?

Yes women have opportunities on drilling rigs in all levels.  We see women working on land and offshore rigs working in the service industry as well drilling.  Drilling rigs are changing with new generation rigs having cyber drilling with computer automated equipment which is changing roughneck's job skills.  Roughnecks are getting more involved in maintenance and less labour intensive.

What do I need to know about arranging my transportation to school?

MDS is located in the town of North Sydney on the island of Cape Breton in the northeastern tip of the province of Nova Scotia, Canada. The closest airport is located 40 minutes away in Sydney and you would take a taxi from the airport to the residence at a cost of about $40 per person. Flights into Sydney tend to be expensive at times so you may have to fly into the Capitol city of Halifax and pre-arrange for a shuttle bus to North Sydney which takes about 5 hours (details available for shuttles from the school office). You should arrange to arrive at the residence one or two days prior to the start date of your program in case of unforeseen travel delays and there will be no extra charge for accommodations. If you are American or from a Commonwealth country you will need a valid passport to enter into Canada, no visa or study permit is required since the program is only 10 days in length and under the 6 month study permit requirement.


Can I enter Canada from the United States with a DUI?

Previous students had good success following the forwarding process. You must not have any criminal record including DUI's even if they are from years ago, this could result in being turned back at the border whether you are driving or flying into the country. Please contact the Canadian Border Services Agency. As a rule, Canada does not allow persons with criminal records including DUI's to enter their country, altough travellers who require in-depth information regarding the process of applying for a waiver / pardon or other admissibility questions can reach the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) during regular business hours, Monday to Friday (08:00-16:00 hours local time, except holidays) by calling (506) 636-5064 or (204) 983-3500 prior to registration to the school.


What are the benefits of pursuing a career in this industry?

The benefits of working this industry will provide:

1.) Well above average wages and significant wage increases with promotions.

2.) Drilling Contractor's offer excellent benefit packages including pensions plans / RRSP matching along with medical and dental plans.

3.) Opportunities to travel and see the world working at the expense of the employer.

4.) Depending on location most land drilling contractors offer living subsistance during your work tour.

5.) Workers can find employment in this field offering equal time on and off allowing you more time with your family at home.

6.) Most employers offer safety bonus and safety awards while working the industry.

7.) Proper planning and investment will allow an employee in this field to retire at an early age.

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