Professional Yachtmaster graduate stories

Professional Yachtmaster Graduate Experiences

Our graduates share their experiences before, during and after taking the professional yachtmaster courses with advice on crewing on yachts.

Heather Hitchcock

Meet Heather- 21 years old, from Bedfordshire and UKSA’s newest Cruising Instructor and Farr Mate. But if you’d told Heather that this would be her job five years ago, she’d never have believed you!

  • Before the course: Flotilla Hostess
  • After the course: Cruising Instructor and UKSA’s newest Farr Mate
My advice

 “Enjoy the first few weeks, it’s full of fun courses that you’ll really enjoy, and be prepared for it to get intense towards the end. Oh! And learn weather early!”

Julia Prinselaar

Julia heard about UKSA through her husband, a British sailor. The timing of the course fit really well into her schedule, allowing Julia to complete her studies at the end of April and begin work in the marine industry in May 2022.

  • Before the course: Working for environmental non-profit
  • After the course: First Mate of ‘Arctic Earth’ expedition sailing vessel
My advice

“If you’ve been thinking about it, do it. I started a career change at 36 — it’s not too late. Hard work pays off. It’s a fast-tracked course with a steep learning curve, but the commitment is worth it.”

Jaimey Wain

Jaimey, a former carpenter on the Isle of Wight, had a passion for sailing which he aspired to turn into a full-time career. Seeking opportunities to progress in the maritime world, he came across UKSA through a friend in Cowes who recommended he visit one of the many career open days.

  • Before the course: Carpenter
  • After the course: Deckhand on 65m Motor Yacht
My advice

Jamiey emphasises the advantage of gaining some prior experience before enrolling in a training programme. He recommends options such as crewing on race yachts in the Solent or joining a local sailing club to start with dinghy sailing, as they provide valuable insights into the maritime industry.