Seacat Services Expands Offshore Wind Apprenticeships 


Continuing a series of successful annual programs, offshore energy support vessel (OESV) operator Seacat Services has launched its apprenticeship scheme for 2023 in collaboration with UKSA, a youth charity for maritime career opportunities, and the Isle of Wight College.

Maintaining development pathways for new UK offshore wind personnel is a vital part of closing an industry-wide skills gap, while ensuring that the benefits of offshore wind development are felt on a local level. In turn, this will serve to bolster the UK supply chain.

Addressing a general lack of support for early careers and increasingly stringent qualifications requirements being put in place across the offshore wind industry, the Seacat Apprenticeship Scheme aims to provide young seafarers with a key point of entry to the sector, a competitive edge and a clear avenue for progression.

“The toolkit that the apprenticeship provides reflects our ongoing commitment to building up the UK maritime supply chain,” says Ian Baylis, founder of Seacat Services. “At Seacat Services we strive to ensure that the employment opportunities of UK offshore wind are actually felt in the UK, something that we feel, as an industry, it is imperative to buy into.”

To broaden the reach of the scheme, Seacat is rolling out apprentice recruitment on a national scale to address the industry-wide struggle of upskilling and attracting new seafarers. From learning to earning, the two-year government-funded program provides comprehensive training to support a career in the offshore renewable energy sector, giving apprentices the bespoke skills, knowledge and behaviors required to work as a crewmember on an OESV.

It has already provided an entry point for a number of ambitious young entrants into the sector, who are now enjoying offshore wind careers.

Beginning on May 5, the successful applicants will undertake a five-week onshore training program at UKSA in Cowes, UK, before becoming a deckhand aboard one of Seacat Services’ OESVs on a three-week on, three-week off rotation. To further their career at Seacat Services, apprentices will have the opportunity to continue with the business and join on a full-time basis upon completion of the final assessment.

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