by Lt. Tom Wanless, WanlessT@Michigan.gov

The Michigan Department of Natural Resources now offers boater safety and hunter education as interactive online courses, giving students an enhanced experience that exposes them to real-life scenarios.

The interactive learning options are offered in addition to the existing traditional classroom and online learning options for both hunter and boater safety.

Boater safety students who opt for the interactive program will follow a storyline adventure that places them in real-life boating scenarios. While virtually navigating a vessel, students may approach a sailboat and must determine the best way to manage the encounter.

Approved by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators, the ilearntoboat program allows students to navigate the curriculum at their own pace and complete the required assessments, including a final exam.

Boaters born after June 30, 1996, and most personal watercraft operators who operate a vessel in Michigan must have a boating safety certificate.

The Michigan DNR recreational safety certificate is valid in other states, which often require an approved boater safety certificate to rent a boat or personal watercraft (such as a JetSki).

Register for a traditional classroom, interactive or online boater safety education course at Michigan.gov/RecreationalSafety (hunter education offerings are also available at this link).

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