MET Field Study to London, 2015
A group of thirteen students in the Maritime Education and Training (MET) specialization participated in a field study to London from 1-6 February. Accompanied by WMU Assistant Professor, Momoko Kitada, the field study provided a unique opportunity to attend the second session of the Sub-Committee on Human Element, Training and Watchkeeping (HTW 2) at the International Maritime Organization (IMO), as observers.
The opportunity to attend HTW 2 was made possible by Dr. Nihan Unlü and Mr. Berty Louis Nayna of the IMO External Relations Office and the students were warmly welcomed by HTW 2 Chairman, Mr. Brad Groves, and Secretary, Mr. Milhar Fuazudeen. The agenda included the validation of various IMO model courses as well as review of STCW passenger ship specific safety training. One student noted ‘I can now understand how difficult it is to harmonize ideas and procedures for the Member States. It was so interesting to see the complexity of the agenda which looks simple at a glance.’
In a courtesy call with IMO Secretary-General, Mr. Koji Sekimizu, the students were encouraged to learn about the history of IMO and the Secretary-General emphasized the importance of ‘shared responsibilities’ among the member states to ensure a sustainable maritime transport system.
The students were also invited to visit the IMO Maritime Knowledge Centre where Head, Ms. Sharon Lynn Grant, offered research support as well as information about internships. The visit to IMO also proved to be an excellent networking opportunity for the students. They not only met delegates from their own countries, but were inspired by meeting many WMU alumni who represent their countries at IMO.
While in London, the students also visited the Nautical Institute which is the international representative body for maritime professionals. In a presentation to the group by Mr. Steven Gosling, Ms. Bridget Hogan, and Ms. Theresa Nelson, the global network of the Institute was explained as well as the current approaches to increasing the recognition of maritime professions. The students were also informed about the valuable resources and knowledge repository available at the Institute.