“I always wanted to be a yacht broker – my time at UKSA helped me achieve my goal.”

Dave spent over 20 years working in the pharmaceutical and medical technology sector but always dreamed of relocating to the coast and setting up a business in the marine sector. Dave made his dreams a reality at UKSA, completing his Professional Yachtmaster qualification. Dave shares his story with us…

“Before coming to UKSA I was working in the pharmaceutical and medical technology sector. I was based at a European office in Zurich working for a US company with headquarters in Chicago. I was an International Commercial Marketing Director and during my 20-plus years in the industry, I worked in various roles including sales, marketing, clinical and commercial.

Dave Whitehouse switching his career options

Why did you decide to change careers and set up your own marine business?

I had always dreamed of eventually setting up my own marine business and had completed many RYA qualifications over the years. However, to get the ball rolling my priority was to re-train and refresh the qualifications to gain my commercial endorsement and work in the marine sector. I looked at several options but wanted to re-train somewhere recognised by the industry as, what I call, ‘best in class’ to support me in developing my second career.

UKSA is a recognised brand worldwide and as a charity, it has a really aspirational goal of enabling young people to experience water-based activities. Importantly for me it is also a highly regarded maritime training centre that is world-renowned for their competency in professional development.

I started the Professional Yachtmaster course at UKSA in March 2017 and finished early in July 2017 with a distinction, gaining the RYA/MCA Commercial Endorsed Yachtmaster (Offshore). At first, it seemed daunting given how much content there was to cover in such little time, however, the balance between classroom teaching and sea-time, peer encouragement and above all the support from the instructors made it a really great learning environment.

Dave Whitehouse with other students at UKSA

What was the best part of training at UKSA?

My favourite part of the experience at UKSA was meeting like-minded people and learning from very experienced instructors who were willing to share as much knowledge you’d be prepared to digest! Each one had a different style of accomplishing the same goal, which just enriches your learning experience – you never stop learning. I am thrilled to say that my wife and I are now happily settling into life in Devon, running our own business. I am the Director of Imperial International Yacht Brokers (South West), achieving my goal in setting up a business in the marine sector. Certainly, my time at UKSA helped to do that with credibility and a recognised professional qualification.”

Dave Whitehouse learning on the solent
For further information on the Professional Yachtmaster (Offshore) qualification, please visit: http://uksa.org/professional-training/deck/professional-yachtmaster/