Jack Stewart, 20, of North End, Portsmouth, heard about UKSA’s Aweigh Ahead course through JobCentre Plus. He was working as a production manager in a factory until a couple of months ago, but has since been signing on and looking for work.
His ambition is to become an outdoor education instructor so the course at UKSA appealed to him, as it gives him experience in working outdoors, learning about routes into employment within the industry, and would give him something positive to put on his CV.
He said: “At first I was a bit wary, but as I got to know more about UKSA I thought this is going to be the best six weeks of my life. I’m loving it, it’s really good. I loved powerboating but I also love working as a team and being around new people. The instructors are really good and you can have a joke with them. Hopefully afterwards I will be able to train to teach kids and adults either watersports or other outdoor education activities. This course has opened a few doors and taught me that there are more opportunities within this industry than I thought.”
For the work experience element Jack spent two weeks working on the iconic Gipsy Moth IV, Sir Francis Chichester’s famous yacht in which he single-handedly circumnavigated around the world. It berths at UKSA and Jack helped by scraping off loose paint and prepping it ready for an upgrade. He also worked on the sails in the workshops and loved his time with UKSA’s busy maintenance team.
He said of his work experience: “It was really good, and actually fascinating learning about stuff I didn’t think I would be interested in! So I can say it broadened my horizons and was one of the best work experiences I have ever done. The way I relate to people has changed and I’m getting more knowledge and experience.”
Jack’s ambition is to become an outdoor activities instructor. We wish him all the very best!