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Tuesday, October 23, 2018

Best Practices in Maritime Education and Training discussed in the Philippines

As part of their 60th anniversary celebrations, and the first anniversary as a Maritime University, the J B Lacson Foundation Maritime University in Aravelo, Iloilo City, Philippines, last week hosted an International Conference on Best Practices in Maritime Education and Training. ("Sharing Best Practices in Maritime Education and Training to meet World Shipping Needs"). The Conference brought together international and national representatives from educational institutions, researchers and industry to share experiences and discuss changing needs.


The keynote address was given by the Norwegian Ambassador to the Philippines, Staale Torstein Risa, who stressed the importance of ensuring high standards in the training of seafarers in the Philippines as well as elsewhere, and the need to maintain a regular dialogue with industry. He also spoke of Norway's long-time association with both J B Lacson and other schools in the Philippines and the ongoing programmes of the Norwegian Shipowners' Association and the Norwegian Training Centre (Manila). He noted that the decision to award honorary doctorates to Andreas Ugland and Jacob Stolt-Nielsen (see article above) was testament to the relationship that existed between both countries and to the University's beneficial interaction with industry.


INTERTANKO Managing Director Dr Peter Swift was also one of the principal speakers (click here to view his presentation). He highlighted why the quality of human resources was key to the future success of the tanker shipping industry and to the fundamental drivers behind the Poseidon Challenge. Swift spoke of the industry's and INTERTANKO's initiatives in support of the recruitment, training and retention of sea staff, as well supporting the welfare and well-being of ships' crews.


He then proceeded to emphasise many of the best practices that were to be expected of educational institutions. These included having a recognised quality assurance system, working closely with industry, having competent lecturers qualified as course designers and trainers, providing courses with measurable objectives and realistic assessments, and course contents being verifiable against recognised industry/international standards.


He also spoke of the value of institutions being linked to international education and training organisations, and the benefits of horizontal and vertical cross-fertilisation across the disciplines, faculties and students within and between educational institutions. As with other links in the maritime chain, he suggested that "Best Practice" also included a commitment to continuous improvement.


Finally he briefly introduced the Tanker Officer Training Standards (TOTS) system, which he subsequently explained in more detail to the J B Lacson staff and administrators.


Contact: Peter Swift