In light of National Careers Week, we interviewed Elle Mattin and asked her about the decision to become a Cadet Officer.

Why did you choose a cadetship?

"So, I went through a stage of not really knowing what I wanted to do in life. I had gone to university previously but ended up dropping out because I didn’t enjoy the course.

"So, I spent a few months really struggling with a career choice. There was a pop-up stand event a few months later in my town and I decided to go because it was all about water sports and the maritime industry, I thought I’d do another season in the water sports department, but I ended up seeing a pop-up stand from Clyde Marine Training. After hearing about the opportunities of working at sea I thought I’d give it a go since my whole family (dad, mum, auntie, uncles and grandad) all had a career at sea".

What have you liked most about your training so far and why?

"I was part of the HND Jan 2020 intake class (covid cohort), which meant for the first few months everything was turned upside down and the majority of lessons were moved online. There were pros and cons to this, especially for phase three which is where I felt we learned the most as part of the overall course. So, at times it was hard but we got through. I guess I'm a bit of a nerd, but I do enjoy studying which is a vital part of this course".

If you have experienced a sea phase, what has the experience been like?

"My sponsoring company are Royal Caribbean and I’ve been lucky to experience my cadetship onboard cruise ships. I was onboard my first ship for 8 months and my second ship for 5 months, which I extended to do the Atlantic crossing. I was super nervous about joining my first ship because it was all new, but everyone was so friendly and helpful, and I soon fitted in. The officers were amazing, we had some good times, and they also helped a lot with my training book".

What would you say to someone thinking about starting their career at sea?

"Enjoy every minute of it because time will fly by and before you know it, you’ll be qualified. It will be hard at times but what course isn’t? As long as you put the time and effort in with lessons and study you will be fine".

"Always ask questions! Don’t be embarrassed because nine times out of ten there will be others in the class also needing that answer too, plus that’s what teachers are for. And don’t worry about your first phase at sea. Yes, you’re taking a big jump in life but just take your time and get involved where you can, you can only do your best!".