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New Crew Training

New Crew Training:

There has been a lot of discussion in the industry lately regarding the training of crew and specifically how to improve the training and preparedness of new crew who are joining the yachting industry and have no sea service experience when they arrive at the crew placement agencies and want to get their first yacht job.

In most cases it is recommended that they take their STCW Basic Safety Training Course, write a resume and start their job hunt.

Are we doing anyone any favors by only recommending new crew take a five day safety class? I don’t think so. Not the aspiring crewmember and not the boat.

As a maritime educator, I am aware of the fact that it is incumbent upon the training providers to ensure that crew are trained and prepared for their roles on the boat before they get there. Sure they should receive their vessel familiarization training once they get on the boat, but the job related training should be done in advance.

So are we training crew for their job onboard the yacht? In most cases no. So why is this and how do we change this? I believe that all new crew (deck, engineering and interior) need to be encouraged to take classes that are more job specific and designed to prepare them to become a yacht crew member.

Of course the STCW class is still required but it is a safety course and cannot be expected to meet the entire scope of training that a crewmember needs to do their job.

So what classes should they take as a minimum:

New Deck hands:
STCW Basic Safety Training
Efficient Deck Hand or Able Seaman & Rating Forming Part of a Navigation Watch
Maritime Security Awareness or Vessel Security for Personnel with Security Duties
Superyacht Crew Course (Powerboat Level 2 tender operator, Intro to Yachting, Superyacht Watchstanding)

More experienced deckhands should consider yachtmaster coastal or offshore as well.

New Engineers:
STCW Basic Safety Training
Approved Engine Course and/or Engineer Pre-Training (QMED style)
Maritime Security Awareness or Vessel Security for Personnel with Security Duties
Superyacht Crew Course (Intro to Yachting, Superyacht Watchstanding, PBL2)

New Steward(esses):
STCW Basic Safety Training
Interior Introduction Course (3 day stewardess training course)
Silver Service/Food Service/Table Service
Bartending I (Wine & Cocktail)
Maritime Security Awareness or Vessel Security for Personnel with Security Duties
Superyacht Crew Course – if boat requires stews to be watch standing ratings

I also recommend that everyone take a Career Seminar and/or specific career counseling to assist each person in how to write a proper resume and how to present themselves. This also helps them determine which department is best suited to them based on their backgrounds and their areas of strength and interest.

Remember: Training and certification will help you get the job, but more importantly the training will help you keep the job!