Back in May I informed you of a new organization, the Superyacht Skills Foundation, which was formed with the goal of spreading the word about crewing careers. The foundation anticipated setting up internships for young men and women from ages 18 to 23 so that they’d learn everything from proper care and maintenance of a megayacht to proper service for owners and their guests.
Well, the recruitment program officially launched last week, via a dedicated Web site called Ultimate Crew. I’ve spent some time exploring it, and I’m quite impressed. Not only is it thoroughly informative, explaining everything from what a superyacht is to what the six-month, paid internship involves, but it also presents profiles of three current crewmembers who detail what their typical days are like. While they all describe how they’re getting to travel a lot and build camaraderie, they don’t gloss over the hard work required. As Danny, a deckhand, writes, “My Mother would be proud of me if she could see the things I clean and the wide range of materials we use! The cleaning can be backbreaking and a little boring sometimes but we have a laugh and vote for the music we want to listen to.”
I’m also particularly impressed with the Ultimate Crew section labeled Info for Parents. When I mentioned this to John O’Sullivan, founder of the Superyacht Skills Foundation, he explained that everyone involved believed it was key. ” Some of the training schools said that quite a few STCW 95 course payments are made by parents-they’re quite influential people when it comes to careers, so we wanted to make sure we talked to them also,” he says.
If you or anyone you know is interested in pursuing a career aboard a megayacht, check out the site. Unlike internships at traditional business, there aren’t just one or two slots open-O’Sullivan tells me, “Our aim is to get 20 to 25 interns onboard for the winter season and a further 50 to 75 in the spring. The target is about 150 a year.” When you consider that the foundation will place one intern per yacht, that’s a good number of vessels that will have helping hands-and that might just hire the intern permanently once the internship ends.
And considering the hundreds of new yachts in the 80-foot-plus range being launched each year, opportunity will continue to knock. It’s only a matter of answering the door.