22 Jun 2018
City of Glasgow College celebrated the graduation of almost 250 Merchant Navy Officers at its annual ceremony in Glasgow Cathedral on Thursday 21 June.
Engineering Officers together with Deck and Navigation Officers were congratulated by the college’s Principal and Chief Executive, Paul Little, who said:
“As the UK’s premier maritime college we are responsible for training one third of all UK Merchant Marine Officers. Our college is very much the ‘Pride of the Fleet’, providing the maritime industry with its next generation of competent, safe seafarers. Our Cadet Officers leave us work ready with the necessary skills, knowledge and indeed attitude to move from shore to ship. Our congratulations go to them all on achieving their well-deserved and internationally recognised qualifications.”
This year’s Guest of Honour and key speaker was Rear Admiral John Weale OBE who, as Flag Officer Scotland and Northern Ireland, holds the Royal Navy’s most senior position in Scotland. He said:
“It was an honour and a privilege to be Guest of Honour at this Graduation Ceremony that showcases the hard work, commitment and dedication that all of the students have shown to become a new generation of qualified mariners. It is easy to forget in this world of instant connectivity that we are an island nation reliant on our sea lines of communication to maintain our economy. These students are following in a great maritime tradition not only of this great city but also of the United Kingdom. I congratulate all the graduates on their achievement and wish them fair winds and following seas.”
In all 249 Officers graduated including 147 Engineering Officers and 102 Deck or Navigation Officers. The graduates achieved Diplomas and Certificates in Marine Engineering, Marine Management Engineering, Marine Management and Nautical Science.
For Ashmina Gumber from New Dehli, City of Glasgow was her college of choice, saying:
“The lecturers really helped prepare me for what lies ahead as have the fantastic facilities which the college has. In just my first week I got to handle a ship during practical watch-keeping classes in the shipping simulation suite. I am now really looking forward to experiencing life at sea and developing my career. This is one of the few industries where you get paid to travel the world and City of Glasgow College is college life done right.”
This year’s graduation at City also welcomed fellow student officers and cadets from the United States who sailed in from New York aboard the Empire State VI. The 172 metre training ship from SUNY (State University of New York) Maritime College, with over 500 officers, cadets and crew on board, was visiting Glasgow for the first time during its annual summer term training voyage.
President of SUNY Maritime College, Rear Admiral Michael Alfultis, said:
“Graduation ceremonies mark a special time in the lives of students and their families, and I am honoured to be at City of Glasgow College celebrating this momentous occasion. As the maritime industry is global in nature, maritime universities must build and deepen their partnerships. As such, we look forward to building a partnership with City of Glasgow College – the UK’s top maritime college – to ensure students and graduates from both colleges can successfully navigate the changing seas.”