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gender balance
Gender equality
Women in Maritime
Unconscious Bias

A UK Meeting Unconscious Bias

“I thoroughly enjoyed the WISTA UK seminar on Unconscious Bias, presented by Brook Graham and hosted by Reed Smith. The topic was both interesting and thought-provoking and certainly received a lot of audience engagement and a few laughs as well. WISTA UK events provide a unique lens on the international shipping industry and I have always found them very useful in terms of content and networking.!

Read more about the event here in Helen’s Opinion Pieced in Lloyd’s List


Helen Kelly Article Lloyd's List June 2018

Young women wanting to join the cruise business!
June 12, 2018

Alot of young women choose a career because they have had at least some sort of rub or interest with the business. Visits to Hospitals, holidays using Airlines, following their parents careers brings us nurses, stewardesses, vets etc… Unfortunately the cruising business is not immediately recognised as a childs ideal holiday and unless the parents pick a cruise line that actively welcomes children and has specific activities for them, they are generally considered a nuisance onboard. So how does a young woman learn that there is an onboard career available for her?

The total worldwide ocean cruise capacity at the end of this year will be 537,000 passengers and 314 ships. Annualized total passengers carried worldwide will be 26 million, an increase of 3.3% over 2017. So are there jobs a plenty and how do you get access to them?

It is not an easy task. There are many specialised cruise job agencies and each year more cruise lines are using them. They explain what Jobs are available and what you are expected to do in the position. They ask you to send a c.v. and then you have to wait to see if you get past the, what is known as the “computer stage”. On asking one of the large agencies to explain how they sort through the thousands of c.v´s they receive I was told that computers scan the c.v´s and they are looking for Key words. If you are applying as a receptionist if at least that word does not show 3 times in your c.v then the c.v. is rejected.

Many agencies are specialized in one or two areas of the ship, for instance, the deck and engine crew and maritime officers positions are on the webpages of maritime academies and agencies.

Everything that is classified as passenger comfort is under the Hotel Department. These positions are usually on the webpages of the cruise job agencies.

On most modern ships the Spa, Shops, Hairdressers, Entertainment, Photograph departments are autonomous in that the ship usually has a contract with a well known Company and this Company places staff onboard so future employees have to go directly to the HR department of that Company.

Out- scourcing on ships is becoming very popular as it takes away many headaches for the cruise line when extra staff is needed and if an employee does not adapt to cruise life, the ship can ask for a replacement.

On a cruise ship there are 4 senior managerial positions to aim for if you want to make a career in this business. 3 of them are Captains. How can there be 3 Captains? Yes, the Chief Engineer holds a Captain´s license so does the Staff Captain and of course the main Captain who is called the “Master” to differentiate him from the first 2. The 4th senior person is the Hotel Director. The 3 Captains are classified as the technical team and the Hotel Director heads up the passenger welfare team.

Our future female Captains will be starting out as cadets and going through marine academies either paying their own way or applying for the many sponserships. There are a number of sponsoring shipping companies, training management companies and charitable organisations who recruit UK and EU nationals as navigation, marine engineer and marine electro-technical officer cadets. Most companies have further information about their officer cadetships on their websites.

Our future Hotel Directors as of yet have no academies to train in. Usually a Director makes his/her way up through the ranks and working in all departments so that the seniority is gained by on-hand experience over the years.

Should you be interested in the Cruise business and would like to ask a question then do not hesitate to contact me on cruise@wista-uk.co.uk

There are as many Female Cruise Ship Captains as Female Airline Captains!

Would it surprise you to learn that on % there are as many Cruise ship captains as Airline captains. My first reaction was that this could not be accurate but investigation showed that World Wide there are 9 women cruise ship captains on the 314 cruise ships ( just under 3%) and there are 4000 women airline captains of the 130,000 captains flying (just over 3%). The UK is in an enviable position in both fields as of the 9900 UK aviators – 570 are women (just over 6%) of the 9 sea-going captains -2 are from Britain (25%). So who are these 9 wonder women who have managed to break through the male barrier and become the new Masters of the 21st century. The first shipping line carrying passengers started in 1818 but it was not until the late 1960´s that the modern cruise industry came into itself. So it has only taken 189 years until the first woman became a Captain on a passenger ship. Being generous and staying within the modern era we can congratulate society for accepting a female Captain 45 years later.

Swedish born Capt.Karin Stahre-Jansen had this honour in 2007 and in the following 10 years UK Capt.Sarah Breton, Swiss Capt. Margrith Ettlin, Usa Capt.Kate McCue,

Danish Capt.Lis Lauritzen, Italian Capt.Serena Melani, Faroe Isles Capt. Inger Olsen, German Capt.Nicole Langosch and UK Capt. Belinda Bennett who also has the added accolade of being the first black female cruise captain in history, started the change.

Not forgetting their hard work and climb through the ranks to reach Staff Captain positions putting them in an ideal situation to become Captains, alot has to be said for the change of mentality in the higher echelons of the Cruise Industry Management. In some of the shipping companies, women have become Presidents and Owners, paving the way to opening doors for female Masters. Fortunately for us women, we are finding barriers being broken daily in all fields and the shipping business is no exception!

Linda Reyes
WISTA UK – Cruising.

#Cruising #WISTAUK #Womeninshipping

Women in Maritime

Women in Maritime Taskforce to map gender balance in UK shipping

At its inaugural meeting in London on 21 February, opened by recently appointed UK shipping minister Nusrat Ghani, taskforce chairperson Sue Terpilowski pledged that the group “would not be just a talking shop” and would give the government its initial recommendations within three months.

The taskforce will focus on how the UK maritime industry recruits women to the sector, the efforts it undertakes to retain them, and it will review remuneration, Terpilowski said.

“A lot of women enter the sector, but they just don’t stay. We need to find out why,” she added.

To assess how effective the taskforce is in its mission, the 30-strong group agreed that using a survey to map the gender balance of the UK maritime workforce – both onshore and at sea – is a necessary starting point for measuring the impact of change.

Nicola Good, executive editor Fairplay | 22 February 2018 Read the full article here


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