LJM Maritime Academy held its very first Race Challenge. The arduous challenge tested cadets’ knowledge as well as their physical and mental endurance. Over 7 challenges, their navigational, engineering, and problem solving skills were tested in a race challenge that pushed them both mentally and physically. The challenge also tested their abilities to work as members of a team.
“I cannot thank the LJMMA enough for this amazing experience. This has been life-changing. My goal is to become a chief engineer”
Hello, my name is Stephan Hepburn and I am 21 years old. I grew up living with my mother, a wonderful encouraging lady, and my number one fan! I did quite well at school as I was a good student.
I was lucky enough to get a small scholarship for a college in Louisiana America, but I decided to return home and work in an engineering job for a year. It was at this time that I heard about the LJM Maritime Academy and was very excited because it was local and would be able to attend from my home.
I found that there was a need for engineers globally and deduced that this career would be a useful one for me. There would always be ships and the needs for people to keep them running. I started at the LJMMA on the 16th of October 2014. The first official day of school was great, I was happy, and I looked outstanding in my uniform.
My first impression as an LJMMA Cadet was huge excitement as I was actually there and ready to embark on this great journey. There was a lot to learn and I had to pay close attention. The CPR class and survival class was fun, as this was all new to me. These skills will benefit me for life.
I enjoyed my thermodynamics class, maths and most especially the more engineering oriented classes, as this played to my strengths. I really looked forward to the practical lessons like the welding workshop where I could weld, and the marine engineering, where I got to strip down a diesel motor.
I cannot stress enough, the importance of hands-on experience. You have to be able to think on your feet, be able to solve problems. For the whole of my time at the LJMMA, I was very serious about my studies, attaining good grades, my time-keeping and about being smart. I stayed immaculate until the day I graduated and passed out.
“I really am realising my life-long dream of a career at sea”
I am Shanté Pearson and I am eighteen years of age and live in Nassau, The Bahamas.
My interest in the Maritime field stemmed from my family’s military background. The majority
of my family members were, or are still, part of The Royal Bahamas Defence Force. Living on an island surrounded by the water, has meant that being a mariner is in my blood.
I joined the Bahamas Maritime Cadet Corps after school programme, graduating at the top of my class. After receiving a scholarship and graduating from the marine cadet programme at Holland College, I decided I would like to enrol in a maritime college. When I heard about the LJMMA I was thrilled, so I was even more excited when my application was accepted.
I really loved the campus, on a private Cay and completely surrounded by water, I felt it embodied everything about the maritime theme. This was also integrated into the teaching experience I received. My favourite part was the Simulation building where I really got to experience marine activities hands-on.
Discipline and teamwork were a priority throughout the entire programme. All of us cadets had to line up on the parade grounds at 8am every morning, for attendance and inspection. We had to be 110% clean, and present all our identification badges and cards. Our shoes had to be so shiny they had to reflect the sun.
At the end of every day our leaders would assign us to different clean up tasks where we had to insure that the entire building was spotless. Since graduating from the LJMMA (Phase 1), I have been eagerly waiting for a berth on a ship. Whilst waiting, to enhance my experience, I undertook further training. I took a PADI Open Water Diver Course to certify me to dive down to 60 feet, and studied for my local class B captain license.
“LJMMA taught me the values of life and the guidelines I should take to become a successful person“
I was born on 13th of February 1996. I had a difficult start to life and my father died when I was just 6. I had to be strong to protect my mother whilst I was growing up, life was hard for us both. I then returned to Nassau, The Bahamas where I was adopted by my aunt.
Even though I had a rocky time at school, I managed to turn my life around and I became an honour roll student, I succeeded in my studies, and I became Deputy Head Boy – a respected leader. I excelled in track and field sport, which saw me elected as a student leader at St John’s College by the Bahamas Athletic Association. There’s no doubt about it, my move back to The Bahamas – and particularly studying at LJM Maritime Academy – changed my life forever.
After completing High school I wanted to become a marine biologist. I achieved a scholarship at the College of The Bahamas, but then I heard about LJM Maritime Academy.
I applied and was accepted. I am a very proud LJMMA Cadet. While studying at the academy I gained an interest in the maritime field and truly fell in love with it. Although my start in life was difficult, the LJMMA experience has motivated me to prove that I can be different and blossom in today’s world. I intend to achieve this Goal by seeking and gaining all the vital knowledge that this world has to offer.
I’m currently undertaking my first 6 months sea training phase for LJMMA, which requires me to do 12 months in total on board the Clipper Tenacious, a Bahamian flagged bulk carrier vessel. Signing my contract on this vessel was one of the best experiences of my life. My self-confidence has increased, I am learning many new skills, and I am really enjoying working with people from all around the world with different cultures and traditions, and building relationships which will last a lifetime. I have been given the opportunity to travel and explore the world. I am loving it!
I continue to work hard because failure is not an option for me, since I have so many people looking up to me as a role model. LJMMA has helped me change my life for the better. This academy is like “Bread and water” in my life. I have achieved so much since my very poor start in life. I am so grateful.
My name is Antonia Butler, I am a nineteen year old graduate of the CV Bethel Senior High School and a Cadet Section Leader. I am enrolled in the LJMMA marine engineering programme.
My interest in the maritime field came early. My dad was a fisherman, and as a young girl I frequently accompanied him on his fishing trips. My own interests had little to do with fishing, they came from a joy in the motion of the sea. I always seemed to have a knack for fixing engines and was always called upon to help when the boat broke down. So when I wasn’t asleep enjoying the sway of the sea, I was either lending a hand to repair the engine, or driving the boat while my dad fished.
I cannot speak highly enough of all of my classes at the LJMMA. My goal is to become a Chief Engineering Officer. I am undeterred by any concerns of being a female pursuing a career in a male dominated field. In fact, because of my example, my thirteen year-old younger sister says she hopes to follow me into the Academy.
I am really looking forward to the day when I finally get to go to sea. I do recognise that it takes a lot of hard work and dedication to succeed. I do know I have to have passion, and a positive mind set on everything.
Even when situations don’t seem positive I believe that you have to have that will to achieve whatever it is you want to achieve. As for my immediate Academy goal, I want to ace everything while I’m here!