Visiting Lecturers Continue Contributions to WMU Education

Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, students at the World Maritime University (WMU) have continued their studies, essentially uninterrupted. Since 17 March, all classes and lectures for the Malmö MSc programme have moved to online learning and students, faculty and visiting lecturers have all embraced the challenge. 

WMU engages maritime professionals from around the world as Visiting Lecturers who contribute their expertise to enrich the education of WMU students. Professor Jens-Uwe Schröder-Hinrichs, Vice President (Academic) noted the important contribution the Visiting Lecturers make to the WMU student experience, and the University’s appreciation of their willingness to embrace the online learning format so the students can benefit from the expertise these highly respected professionals have to offer. He said, “We are unique in the experiences we offer, such as we connect our students with an extraordinary global network of professionals. Despite the global challenges we are facing, WMU is staying true to the specificity that makes our programme unique, ensuring that we deliver on our exceptional mission as we educate the maritime and ocean leaders of tomorrow.”

Since the move to online learning in mid-March, fourteen Visiting Lecturers across all seven specializations have delivered their lectures online. Some of the lecturers and content include:

  • Technical officers, Mr. Mourad Ghorbel and Ms. Alyekka Stella Aber, from the IMO Subdivision on Maritime Security and Facilitation (Maritime Safety Division), who delivered four virtual lectures from their respective locations in London and Tunisia. The lectures highlighted important legal aspects of the International Ship and Port Facility Security Code (ISPS), in particular, the implementation of the ISPS Code at the national level and how drills and exercises should be conducted regularly and efficiently. The course is part of an annual collaboration between IMO and WMU which focuses on “Legal Aspects of Maritime Safety and Security” as part of the postgraduate Masters specialization in Maritime Law and Policy (MLP). The sixteen students in the course appreciated the opportunity to have direct interaction with specialized IMO officials, as well as their willingness to answer specific questions. 

  • Maritime Energy Management (MEM) students have benefited from the online learning contributions of Visiting Lecturers. As part of the teaching module “Energy Management in Maritime Onshore Facilities,” video conferencing lectures were delivered by Mr. Sotiris Rapitis, Senior Policy Advisor for Environment & Safety, EcoPorts Coordinator of European SeaPort Association (ESPO); Mr Eddy Van Hoven, Quality Assurance manager and Operations of Port of Antwerp, Belgium; and Associate Professor Ilaria Delponte, University of Genova. The lectures provided a unique opportunity for the MEM students to engage with, and benefit from these professionals in terms of best practices in relation to energy management application and mitigation measures for GHG and air pollution reduction in port contexts.

  • Shipping Management and Logistics (SML) students interacted with United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) speakers as a part of the “Shipping Management” module. Various presentations were delivered by Dr. Jan Hoffmann, Chief of Trade and Logistics, as well as Economic Affairs Officers Ms. Luisa Rodriguez and Ms. Celine Bacrot. Topics included overviews of the global maritime transport market, including the demand and supply of the world trade, transportation costs, shipping connectivity, trade facilitation for shipping and ports, digitalization and transformation in the industry, and how to develop sustainable shipping. The students gained a greater understanding of the importance of international shipping, particularly during this time when the world is facing challenges due to COVID-19. 

  • The Port Management (PM) students benefited from online lectures including a course delivered by Dr. Iven Kraemer, Head of Unit - Port and Shipping Management, Bremen’s Ministry for Science and Ports. The lectures addressed port performance indicators, various port governance models, port operation and cargo handlings, terminal operation systems, port hinterland connectivity, automation and future ports, as well as environmental sustainability issues in ports. The lectures provided an insight into the very specialized port industry through a blend of theory and practice with the aim of developing the students’ skills as effective port managers.

Thirteen further Visiting Lecturers are scheduled to deliver their lectures online until the beginning of July as the students wrap up their second term of studies when they focus on courses specific to their respective areas of specialization. The students continue to keep their spirits up despite the uncertain times with one student stating: “Neither Covid-19, nor any other pandemic, can fade our determination.”

In 2019, over 70 Visiting Lecturers taught in the Malmö MSc programme, many from international organizations including the International Maritime Organization (IMO), the International Labour Organization (ILO), the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS), the International Oil Pollution Compensation Funds (IOPC), the European Commission (EC), the European Maritime Safety Agency (EMSA), Environment and Safety (ESPO), the International Marine/Maritime Satellite Organization (INMARSAT), and the International Windship Association (IWSA).

The Malmö MSc in Maritime Affairs is a 14-month programme with seven specializations: Maritime Education & Training; Maritime Energy Management; Maritime Law & Policy; Maritime Safety & Environmental Administration; Ocean Sustainability, Governance and Management; Port Management, and Shipping Management & Logistics. Foundation studies are taught in the first term and cover the introductory knowledge that is fundamental to all activities in the maritime field. Three successive terms focus on specialization studies and a dissertation. The University is moving forward with plans to welcome an incoming class of students for the Malmö MSc programme that is scheduled to start in September 2020. 

For more information about WMU’s academic programmes, click here.

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