Alaska Department of Administration

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Steward (25-DOT362)

at Alaska Department of Administration

Pay: $17.48 to $21.36/hour
$17.48 - $21.36
Posted: 9/21/2019
Job Status: Seasonal
Job Reference #: 2579292
Keywords: hospitality

Job Description

Overall Job Objective

Job Description



Sail around the great state of Alaska while working aboard our beautiful ships! If you love to travel, meet new people or are looking for the perfect opportunity to kick start a career on the water, the Alaska Marine Highway may have the ideal opportunity for you!
Passenger service employees provide exceptional customer service and ensure the safety for our passengers while performing tasks in the galley, dining room or cafeteria, crew mess, staterooms and public areas aboard the ferries.

Experience and/or education in hospitality industry (hotel, resort, cruise, restaurant, fast food etc.) is preferred. A strong combination of the following knowledge, skills and abilities are highly desirable:
  • Strong interpersonal skills and customer service aptitude
  • Commercial cooking and/or food service experience
  • Experience using Point-of-Sale systems (computerized cash registers)
  • Strong communications skills: verbal, non-verbal, and written
  • Basic computer literacy & internet knowledge
  • Ability to take directions and work with a diverse team
  • Ability to interpret and follow rules, policy & procedures
  • Ability to maintain composure & professional demeanor
This is a public service position in the government sector providing service in marine environment. As such, a strong commitment to safety, public service and work ethics is required. Public employees have a responsibility to maintain the public's trust. AMHS is a Drug-Free workplace and has a strictly enforced Drug & Alcohol Policy. Candidates with the following traits and characteristics are highly desirable;
  • Strong commitment to safety
  • A genuine desire to serve the public
  • Positive, personable, and professional demeanor
  • Adaptive to learning new skills and knowledge
  • Adaptive to changes in a progressive work environment
  • Strong record of being organized, dependable and punctual
  • Strong conflict resolution skills and ability to work within a diverse workforce
Required Documents (Upon Hire)
AMHS operations are governed by State, Federal and International Maritime regulations. Employees are required to possess and maintain several Maritime and Hospitality industry certifications to work aboard the AMHS vessels. Obtaining these documents can take some time depending on the issuing agency (approx. 2 months). Some certifications require US Citizenship or Legal Residency and a background check. Cost associated with these documents are candidate's responsibility. Below is the list of the certifications required for the entry level stewards before they can be dispatched to work:
  • Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC): This credential is issued by Transportation Security Administration (TSA), a division of the Department of Homeland Security. The ability to obtain this credential will require a criminal history/background check. The application process takes several weeks and must be started before applying for the MMC (Merchant Mariner Credential). More information is available at Transportation Security Administration.
  • Merchant Mariner Credential (MMC): This credential is issued by the National Maritime Center, a division of United States Coast Guard (USCG). Please contact your nearest USCG office for obtaining the MMC or go online to the listed website below. There are different versions of the MMC. Select the Entry Level application option and ensure you have the Steward (FH) endorsement and Medical Certificate on your MMC. You must possess or apply for your TWIC before you can apply for your MMC. More information is available at National Maritime Center.
  • DOT Drug Test: All prospective employees must submit to a pre-employment chemical test for drugs and must receive a negative test result prior to performing employee functions. The test must have been done within the 6 months prior to your new hire orientation. If an MMC was obtained recently, the test results will be included in your MMC paperwork. You may otherwise get your test done at USCG authorized drug testing facility.
  • Alaska Food Worker Card: This card is issued by Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC). Application is available online at
  • Training for Alcohol Professionals (TAP): This certification is required for any crew member 21 and older. Information for obtaining this certification is available at
Work Locations
AMHS operates in two distinctive regions. The Southeast (SE) region covers the routes between Bellingham WA and Skagway, AK. The majority of AMHS vessels operate in this region. The other, more remote and smaller region is the Southwest (SW), which includes the routes between Cordova and the Aleutian Chain. The relief pool for the Southwest route is small in comparison to Southeast. Currently, we are recruiting primarily for the SE region with Ketchikan and Juneau as the main change ports (dispatch locations). Note that all change ports are in Alaska.
Vessel Assignments & Onboard Schedule
AMHS vessel operations are a 24/7 work environment with variable crew assignments. In general, you will be assigned to a vessel on a Week On - Week Off schedule, working an average of 84 hours per week. Your daily schedule during your vessel assignments may vary from 8 hours to 12 hours and you may be asked to work split shifts. AMHS dispatch department handles all vessel assignment related matters. Assignments are posted periodically by dispatch. Vessel supervisors set your daily tasks and work schedule once onboard. You may be asked to switch/upgrade positions during your assignments.
Life Onboard
This is a fast-paced and dynamic work environment with a diverse workforce. Room & board is provided while on assignment - on select vessels. Crew stays in shared quarters and meals are provided at the crew mess on most vessels.

Important: A new hire should either be domiciled or willing relocate to Southeast Alaska; at least during the summer season and ideally lives within the vicinity of the change ports mentioned above to adapt to the Week On - Week Off nature of the work assignments. It would be very difficult to afford frequent travel between your home town and your change port.
Application Process
Due to large volume of applications AMHS utilizes a third party applicant tracking system (ATS) for the Steward position. The position is listed through several job sites including WorkPlace Alaska. However applications are only accepted through the ATS on AMHS employment page. Due to time it takes to review a large volume of applications and a candidates' own pace to acquire the required documents, the hiring process may take up to 6 months.

Please note all applications must be submitted through the application hyperlink above.

Minimum Qualifications

Must possess the abilities listed above.

Must be at least eighteen (18) years of age.

High School diploma or equivalent.

Must be eligible to obtain a Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) and a US Coast Guard Merchant Mariner's Credential (MMC).

Physical ability to perform any required duties of the Steward's Department, with or without reasonable accommodation.

Upon job offer, must be willing to submit to a physical and drug test.

Emergency medical response training is preferred.

Lifeboatment's Training and/or Endorsement is preferred.

Special Note:
Please contact your nearest Homeland Security Office regarding application for the TWIC. Also, contact your nearest USCG office regarding the process for obtaining the MMC.

Additional Required Information

The applicant pool for this position will be reviewed regularly for qualified applicants.

The State's on-line recruitment system, Workplace Alaska, requires applicants to certify that they have a legal right to accept employment in the United States. It is the responsibility of the employee to maintain the appropriate documentation to accept or continue legal employment. The State of Alaska does not function in the role as an employer sponsor.

AMHS offers a competitive starting pay scale that varies by operating region. Entry level Steward pay rate ranges between, $17.48 and $21.36 per hour, depending on residency. New hires who successfully complete their probationary period (approximately 6 to 12 months), will then be considered as permanent employee and able to apply for higher paying positions. AMHS provides progressive advancement opportunities to higher paying positions.

New hires qualify for the State of Alaska benefits usually within 30 days of hire. The State of Alaska offers one of the best benefit systems in Alaska and includes medical and dental insurance with optional family coverage, retirement benefits, vacation and personal leave which accrues with years of service. A summary of state benefits can be reviewed here.

Valid copies of the required documents listed above must be received by our recruitment desk within 3 months of the job offer. Each candidate will be provided with a deadline to submit their documents. If the documents are not received within the deadline the job offer may be rescinded as the hiring process cannot continue without the required documents.

New Hire Orientation (NHO)
Successful candidates will need to attend the New Hire Orientation (NHO) in Ketchikan, Alaska and complete their hiring process. Once the hiring paperwork is done and the NHO completed you will be eligible for dispatch.
Traditionally, AMHS carries more passenger and cargo during the summer months. Seasonality of our business volume dictates when we recruit new hires and how the work is assigned once hired. All entry-level employees are hired on permanent basis with a probationary period of 6 to 12 months average. However, the availability of assignments fluctuates between the summer and winter; thus impacting the consistency of the assignments, especially in the winter. Additionally, seniority plays a major role in who gets the available assignments first. Therefore the first winter may be slow for a new hire in regards to available assignments. Once the probationary period is over and enough seniority has been acquired a new hire can apply for the bid positions which gets dispatched more regularly. Employees are allowed to apply for approved absence from work (LWOP) which is usually granted for the winter months. We require new hires to be fully available during the summer season (May through September).

Applicants must have an email address that is monitored on a daily basis, and provide a reliable phone number that can receive text and voice messages. Our recruitment desk does not accept applications over the phone and may not be able to immediately return calls. We use email and/or text messaging as the primary method for communication. Therefore, it is strongly recommended that you have access to a computer and a mobile phone during the entire hiring process. We expect to hear from candidates within the few days of our communication (request for interview, documentation, follow up, etc.). Recruitment process cannot continue if the candidate is not responsive. Please also note that how you communicate with your potential employer is part of the evaluations process. Always be polite, prompt and professional when communicating with the office.

Pre-Employment Testing
AMHS may require completing one or more online tests to help evaluate a candidate's fitness for the position. If testing is required, the web link for the test will be sent to the candidate via email and/or text message.
Application Process
Due to large volume of applications AMHS utilizes a third party applicant tracking system (ATS) for the Steward position. The position is listed through several job sites including WorkPlace Alaska. However applications are only accepted through the ATS on AMHS employment page. Due to time it takes to review a large volume of applications and a candidates' own pace to acquire the required documents, the hiring process may take up to 6 months. 

Please note all applications must be submitted through the application hyperlink above.

Contact Information

For questions about the position, please contact the following:

Passenger Services Recruitment Team
Alaska Marine Highway System
State of Alaska, DOT&PF