UKSAThere’s an amazing opportunity for young people, right here on our doorstep.

Cowes-based youth charity UKSA is proudly offering funded places on its flagship course, the three year Superyacht Cadetship, through generous bursaries from Trinity House and Seafarers UK.

The course is a ground-breaking, highly-respected and finely structured programme designed to train the future officers and captains of the superyacht industry. It combines: phases of training at UKSA with paid work placements in the growing and lucrative superyacht industry; and a Foundation Degree in Operational Yacht Science delivered in conjunction with Falmouth Marine School which is validated by the University of Plymouth. Training begins in October 2014. Earn while you learn, travel the world and qualify to degree level!

UKSA yachting cadets are typically aged between 18 and 25 years old and are drawn from a variety of backgrounds – the bursaries making it a valid option for even more career-minded young people. One of the previous lucky bursary recipients was Thomas Higgins, a 22 year old from London, who knows of no-one else in his local community that works at sea, never mind anyone training to work on superyachts! He was granted a bursary by Trinity House following a successful application process, and he can’t believe his luck.

As Thomas explains, “Trinity House is paying 75% of the first phase, including food and accommodation, and they give me £200 a month living allowance. They also pay for the foundation degree I am doing as part of the course. A student loan covers the rest. You can imagine, I am ecstatic. It has completely changed my life, and I can hardly believe it is happening to me.”

“I started in October 2013 and have been studying theory as well as going out on sea phases already, on the Farr and some smaller yachts. I hadn’t even been on a yacht previously but I have absolutely loved it, I haven’t been sea sick at all and I have enjoyed it when it has been rough out on the water. Some of the passages have been quite tough but overall it is all fantastic experience.”

“Hopefully by March I will have found my first placement on a superyacht, but if not I will go to Antibes and dock-walk to find one, as I want to get into the industry as soon as possible before coming back to UKSA for the rest of my training. I am really driven to get myself a good career now that I have been given this opportunity. It is such a privilege, I’m under no illusions that I will be expected to work really hard to get as far as I can in the industry, but – superyachts – it’s quite seductive, what a unique industry to be working in!”

Thomas is one of many people who knew he wanted to be part of UKSA as soon as he stepped foot inside the gates of the Arctic Road site. He explains: “I came to UKSA for an Open Day after meeting someone who had done a hospitality course here and they recommended it. She explained all about UKSA and it sounded exactly what I wanted, and when I got here I just fell in love with the place. I couldn’t afford a course, especially the three-year cadetship, so I looked into the bursaries and was lucky enough to get accepted.”

Around 9,000 people enjoy what UKSA has to offer each year, from school children on their first residential course away from home, to maritime professionals topping up their training.

For more information go to www.uksa.org

To find out about bursaries, email pybs@uksa.org or telephone 01983 203038 for an application pack.