TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. (AP) — A maritime training school in northern Michigan is marking its 50th anniversary.

Northwestern Michigan College’s Great Lakes Maritime Academy is holding an event Saturday at the college’s Hagerty Center in Traverse City. The event, which costs $50 to attend, is designed to recognize its cadets, industry partnerships and the achievements of its graduates.

Academy courses include seamanship, navigation and piloting, as well as diesel and steam engineering. A training ship is used as a floating, hands-on classroom.

The academy’s goal is to prepare students for careers as professional mariners.

Officials say the academy is one of six such schools in the U.S. and the only one located on freshwater. It graduates 50 cadets annually.

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