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Endeavour Maritime Springboard Grads Share Their Maritime Journeys

24 Oct 2023

~ Written By Robyn Bardgett

Endeavour, a Bermuda-registered charity that builds self-confidence and life skills for Bermuda’s youth through experiential education, partners with the Bermuda College Athora Division of Professional and Career Education (APACE) to prepare young Bermudians for working in the maritime industry. The Endeavour Maritime Career Springboard Programme is a seven-week training initiative for Bermudians aged 16 and older to gain hands-on experience and explore career options in the maritime sector. 

After six years and assisting 64 Bermudians develop skills and experience to work in the maritime industry both in Bermuda and abroad, Endeavour is preparing for its seventh cohort which will run from January 8 to February 23, 2024.

We highlight three successful Springboard Graduates and see where their time in the programme has taken them in their future endeavours. 

Ruth Mello-Cann, 18

2022 Springboard Cohort

The connections that Ruth Mello-Cann made during the Springboard programme were invaluable. 

“Long lasting connections are very important to stay involved in the maritime industry,” she says.

But while she is currently studying Environmental Science and Sustainability at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah, she intends to continue to stay connected with the sailing world while working in the marine science field, potentially as a marine field tech.

Her time with Endeavour’sMaritime Springboard Programme helped her not only gain knowledge of sailing and the marine environment but helped her with the knowledge needed in the maritime industry including meteorology and navigation that allowed her to qualify as a Royal Yachting Association Dinghy Instructor. 

Earlier this summer she also secured an internship with BIOS where she was able to further explore the field of marine science.

“I was able to work with visiting scientists and be part of real and current studies on coral ecosystems,” she says.

For anyone interested in different STEAM and maritime fields, Ms Mello-Cann believes the Springboard programme is invaluable. 

“If you enjoy anything hands-on or on-water, definitely apply,” she says.

MaLahku Selassie, 20

2022 Springboard Cohort

Through the connections made while taking part in the Endeavour Maritime Career Springboard programme in 2022, MaLahku Selassie continued to build on his maritime experience after the programme ended, going as far as the UK.

“The programme really opened my eyes to so much that you can do within the maritime industry,” says Mr Selassie, who spent February to June of this year at the United Kingdom Sailing Academy on the Isle of Wight where  he was able to further his maritime qualifications achieving the Royal Yachting Association Yachtmaster.

“It was a change of pace from sailing in Bermuda with having to wear wet weather gear, but the Solent around the Isle of Wight there’s a lot of boat activity and major ports, and training along the South Coast and passages to France were really cool,” he says.

Along with the training and updating his qualifications it was also a chance to network. 

Back at home, Mr Selassie has worked on several charter boats, gained experience as a photographer on one of the chase boats for SailGP during the Inspire Careers Programme and is working towards gaining dive master and his captain’s license. In the future he hopes to work deliveries around Florida and the Caribbean.

“I feel a lot of passion for the Springboard programme and the connections and opportunities it has offered me,” he explains. “The experience teaches so many things and so much more than just sailing, including confidence.”

Adrian McPhee

2023 Springboard Cohort

Working with other passionate people during his experience with the Springboard programme is one of the highlights of Adrian McPhee’s time in the 2023 cohort. 

“Being around other like minded people with the passion to be on the water made the learning more enjoyable,” he said.

Along with making lasting connections with the other cohort members, the Springboard programme gave him the foundation to pursue a career as a charter boat captain.

“The Springboard programme helped me develop my skills on the water from something as simple as tying knots to docking boats,” he explained. “It gave me the fundamentals to break into the maritime industry but also the ability to do it with more confidence.”

Since finishing up the programme in February of this year, Mr McPhee has been using his skills on glass bottom boats where he has stepped up his skills from a deckhand trainee to learning to operate a boat up to 65 ft working with Captain Kirk’s Coral Reef Adventures. He is also working towards getting his pilot’s license to be able to take on a full-time captain role and eventually start his own charter company.

He believes that anyone with “a love for the water or an interest in working in the maritime industry” should think about applying for the programme.

“It’s seven weeks for a lifetime of knowledge,” he says.
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