Trade winds beckon for life on the high seas

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 01 August, 1998, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 01 August, 1998, 12:00am

Hong Kong is renowned for its busy shipping lanes and sophisticated container terminals and within this frenetic activity are diverse opportunities for the maritime-minded.

Jack Haworth, manager of the purpose- built Vocational Training Council's Seamen's Training Centre in Tuen Mun, is quick to point out a wide range of marine- related industries which need enthusiastic and motivated young people.

The training centre provides cadets with a career structure which follows on from diploma, higher diploma and a degree or Masters Certificate, gained by passing examinations and service at sea.

There are also plans to establish a Maritime Training Institute, which will involve several technical institutes in Hong Kong and mainland China as a network offering the best facilities, lectures and equipment.

Through the Joint Admissions Scheme for Post-Secondary Institutions Courses (JASPIC), students who complete their secondary education with the required grades and have good eyesight can apply to join the two-year diploma cadet course in maritime studies.

Graduates have a choice of career paths, including navigation, electronics, engineering, communications or medicine.

Each year, the centre accepts about 20 cadets for the diploma in maritime studies - 64 entrant ratings, 20 deck cadet officers and 3,000 in-service seafarers who wish to upgrade their skills.

William L. W. Wong, chief instructor (maritime studies), said a new cadet was someone who had done well at school and was looking for adventure and the chance to become more responsible.