Promote more women to maritime leadership, urge advocates 

As the industry shines the spotlight on women in maritime, maritime safety training provider Stream Marine Group (SMG) says more females should be seen in leadership positions to attract females into maritime. SMG, which also manages cadet programs and the transition to alternative fuels, says that applications from females for cadetships is increasing. 

Group Operations Director Katy Womersley says this is good progress but she would like to see more women in leadership positions to further enhance the diversity of the sector. 

Womersley, who began her career as a seafarer before moving onshore, said: “Things have moved on a lot since I was at sea.  Although the industry has made good progress and we are seeing organizations like the IMO and Maritime UK putting diversity high on the agenda, we can still improve. As well as females working on ships, companies should also be focusing on promoting women within their organization to leadership roles to further promote maritime as a career that has no limits.”

Kellie McKechnie, a former seafarer and Cadet Training Manager, Stream Marine Careers, part of SMG, said: “It is positive we are seeing not only an increase in applications but also the caliber of applicants. More candidates are applying that have a strong background in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) subjects which are required for enrolling as a cadet. 

“We are starting to see more females applying with good STEM qualifications. The key to continuing this trend is to engage with young people, before they choose what subjects they want to take. We want to show them that maritime is an excellent career path, and being a seafarer isn’t the only path too. We’re not just selling a career at sea; we’re selling a career in maritime.

“The industry has also become a lot more understanding that women and men may want to pursue a family life at some point in the future and there is more flexibility, allowing women and men to do that. So, it’s about raising awareness of that too.”

Photo credit: iStock/ monkeybusinessimages

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