Work experience on yachts proposed to address predicted crew shortage
Yachting associations worldwide are banding together to encourage yachts to take on young work experience candidates to address the expected shortfall of skilled crew over the next decade.
MYBA, GEPY, ItalianYachtMasters, Yacht Captains Association and the PYA are suggesting a scheme whereby students from French and Italian schools and colleges can send students to yachts for work placements during the winter, for periods of 1-6 weeks.
This is intended to encourage more young people into yachting, while providing them with a realistic understanding of life and work onboard a superyacht. It is hoped that incorporating work experience on yachts into their schooling will engender a firmer sense of superyacht work as a career rather than a short-term prospect.
When they complete their work placement on yachts, these students will have a little more experience and understanding of the yachting industry than completely ‘green’ crew, which could make them an attractive hiring prospect for captains.
According to Joey Meen of the PYA, captains are reporting increasing difficulty recruiting experienced or well-qualified people, and this measure is intended to introduce yachting as a career to a younger generation who can then work towards the necessary qualifications to enter the industry with experience and an intended career path.
“Both the ItalianYachtMasters and the PYA have already been engaging with relevant further education establishments; in Italy these placements have already proven successful. However we need to take this incentive to a more global level to ensure opportunities for all nationalities. The yachting sector has outgrown the backpacker era and is in need of a fresh approach to attracting young crew. I strongly believe that by recruiting through engineering, hospitality and maritime further education platforms, we will have a more professional and stable crew for the future.” says Meen.
If the scheme is successful, it will be extended to schools in other countries, and yachts are also welcome to accept students at other times of year. The PYA is already in discussions with hospitality schools and engineering colleges to support the proposal.
The discussion is also spurring interest in inviting shore based yachting professionals onto the yacht to learn about operations, in order to decrease the gap of understanding that sometimes exists between land-based and yacht-based professionals. If this scheme comes to fruition, crew will also be invited into shore-based businesses and ports to better understand their operations and challenges.
For more information contact the C&NI Crew Placement Division or your training provider.