On 13 July 2022, approximately 110 youths from the Institute of Technical Education (ITE), Singapore Maritime Academy (SMA), and Young SMOU members participated in the bi-annual Young Mariners’ Networking event, organised by YSMOU and the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA).
The session kickstarted with SMOU sharing on how the Union is able to help the seafaring members in times of need and how the Union works together with its tripartite partners in shaping a better maritime industry in Singapore, such as allowing for crew change and vaccination to be made more accessible, when the world was hit hard by Covid-19 in the past 2 years. Other efforts by the Union includes providing job matching and temporary employment to members whose job were affected, continuous engagement with the members and shipping companies, and many more. This gave the youth a better understanding on how the Union contributes to the industry.
During the session, MPA shared on a newly launch incentive programme – Sail Milestone Achievement Programme (SailMAP). SailMAP is a joint initiative by MPA and tripartite partners, to encourage and support local seafarers in their career progression as a seafarer. Local seafarers will enjoy a host of milestone bonuses as they progress from Certificate of Competency (CoC) class 3/5 to CoC class 1, with a potential of benefitting up to S$50,000. Local seafarers attempting their CoC class 3/5 examinations for the first time will also have their examination fees waived.
For youths who are looking at opportunity to jump-start their seafaring career, can consider the Tripartite Maritime Scholarship (TMSS), which covers tuition fees at SMA and the compulsory short courses fees. The scholarship also provides monthly allowances when the student is studying for his/her diploma, and the other milestone achievement bonuses at the various stages.
This informative sharing session on the SailMAP and TMSS by MPA provides aspiring youths with more options to consider when embarking on their seafaring careers.
A seafaring career does not stop when one attains the CoC Class 1 or rises to the rank of Master Mariner and Chief Engineer. In fact, for seafarers with a valid CoC, there are multiple shore-based career pathways to choose from. The Singapore Maritime Foundation shared some onshore roles that talents can explore including crewing, chartering and marine/technical superintendent to name a few, and all the way to top management in the maritime industry.
Following the sharing session, the speakers took turns to answer the questions raised by the youth. Some questions included elaborating more on Singapore’s unique tripartism system and the kind of assistance provided by the union for seafarers. There were other questions such as the importance of having the experience to command the ship before coming ashore. The youths also took the chance to clarify with MPA regarding the TMSS Scholarship, and SailMAP.
Through the event, the youths had a clearer picture of the possible career pathways, support schemes and scholarships available for seafarers and how the Union protects its seafarers. The Union would like to thank the speakers for the sharing, and for answering the enquiries posted by the youths.
“I was curious about the alternative job opportunities available after attaining CoC and wanted to learn more about how the SailMAP scheme worked. I’m glad I attended the event as now I’m more informed. The session was very enriching and helped us gain awareness on opportunities such as TMSS and SailMAP, and also giving us advice on our seafaring career.”
Chia Yu Eng, SMA – Diploma in Nautical Studies
“As I am currently studying, the extra knowledge gained through this event would be really helpful for me in the future. As I had some uncertainty about the maritime industry prior, and the programme was very informative and helpful for me to clear the doubt, with the insightful sharing from the different speakers.”
Khairatun Nahwah, ITE – Higher Nitec in Maritime Business
“I decided to sign up for this event so that I can learn more about my career progression and the other pathway options that I may want to consider, and I now understand the maritime industry better. Thank you SMOU for organising this informative session for us.”
Kevinjit Singh (SMOU Member), in the midst of attaining CoC Class 3
“While I was onboard, I saw a circular regarding the SailMAP initiative that sparked my interest. Attending the event today, I feel more informed about the scheme, and think this would be very beneficial for the younger generation who would like to learn the benefits and opportunities that lie ahead in the industry.”
Isaac Ong, 3rd Engineer (SMOU Member)