Kevin Baird, Harbour Master and Marina Manager of Bangor Marina, describes his experience with Intern Europe, providing work placements for Italian nautical students.
Bangor Marina was approached three years ago by Intern Europe, which led to a successful pilot scheme and subsequent regular work placements. Teachers from Italy visit on a regular basis to ensure that the marina is offering the right experience for their students.
Over the past three years we have built up an excellent working relationship with a Nautical College in Livorno, Italy. To date, we have hosted 12 apprenticeship programmes.
Our most recent interns, Martina and Leonardo will be working with us until Christmas. As a company we endeavour to promote and foster quality relationships with our placement students.
During their time with us we will challenge and encourage them to develop skills which will be beneficial to their future seagoing careers. Nautical English and giving directions in English to boat owners is just one of the many skills students learn whilst working with us; it’s also one of the skills where we see the most progress.
Many of the students that have passed through Bangor Marina have successfully graduated and have started their sea-going careers. We keep in contact with most of them and every now and then receive photos from exotic locations that they have visited by ship.
Kevin recognises the benefits of the reciprocal learning process that comes from teaching, where both parties further each other’s understanding. He offers this advice to other managers:
It is extremely encouraging to see a young person wanting to learn and try something new and to be able to assist in that process is very rewarding. If you’re ready to share your wisdom and help someone else discover his or her full potential, mentoring may be your opportunity.