Nurturing the next generation – Schools, Apprenticeships and Careers Day at SIBS

The Southampton International Boat Show opens its doors to hundreds of apprentices, school children and career-seekers as the industry shows off the myriad of exciting opportunities to work in the British marine sector.

With hundreds of exhibiting companies showcasing some of the largest and finest yachts in the world, equipment manufacturers with ground-breaking innovations, electronic and technology companies, holiday operators, interior and design specialists, creative and financial service industries, management and hospitality providers all on display at Southampton International Boat Show, it’s the perfect place to inspire and excite young people into all the opportunities available working within the marine sector.

At the forefront of promoting apprenticeships and careers in the industry, British Marine will be hosting Schools, Apprentices and Careers Day on Tuesday 19 September at the show, when it will be throwing its doors open to career-seeking visitors of all ages.

Lesley Robinson, CEO, British Marine explains, “The marine industry is full of people who absolutely love working in this sector and there’s so much variety on offer from engineering to hospitality, financial and creative services through to crewing on a superyacht.  As Steve Jobs famously said: ‘Your work is going to fill a large part of your life, and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do’.”

To get the day underway 60 apprentices, from five leading companies in the marine industry, will be receiving their hard-earned certificates at a graduation celebration. Famous TV broadcaster, marine biologist and conservationist Monty Halls will once again be supporting the event.  Noting that the sea is the seventh largest economy in the world, and due to double in the next decade, as keynote speaker, Monty will underline the need for good people working in the industry to navigate through these changes.

Alongside Monty, BBC TV star of “The Apprentice” Jasmine Kundra will host the event and also provide some top tips on the route to success. While top personnel from British Marine member companies will be hosting a Q&A session for all those attending, making it a great opportunity for anyone interested in a career in the marine sector to come along and learn more.

The Graduation Ceremony takes place at 10.00 until 13.00 in the Holiday Inn, located within the show site.

Finding a career you love can happen at any stage of your life, and there’s no age barrier to coming along to the Careers and Apprenticeship evening hosted by British Marine (16.00-19.00 [Holiday Inn, Southampton).  15 companies and training providers will be on hand to offer marine career advice to young people, their parents and guardians, as well as those looking for a career change.  Those attending the event will also be given free ticket to visit the show the following day.

Manj Mahey, Head of Training at British Marine comments: “We want to engage with everyone, of any age, and open their eyes to the amazing opportunities available to work within a dynamic and growing industry.

“British craftsmanship is renowned throughout the world, and there’s so many chances to forge a career in the marine sector.  You may want to spend time on the water, or you may prefer to be an engineer or developer working on land creating some of the world’s iconic vessels.  We often see skilled craftsman who switch from working in, for example, the housing sector, becoming woodworkers, plumbers and electricians working on superyachts, flying all over the world. 

“This evening is a great opportunity to explore all options, and understand what paths are available to achieve your goals.”

The day also sees a celebratory reception organised by Maritime UK Solent, where the finalists of the Maritime UK Solent Awards will take place from 13.30-15.00.

Plus, over 700 school children aged 11 upwards will be attending the show to get a taste of marine life.  There will be a special Foredeck Stage takeover with informative talks and activities.  The treasure hunt will provide the perfect opportunity to navigate around the whole show as the children track down the clues.  They will also be provided with a range of opportunities to get out on the water. A lucky few will get the chance to sail out into Southampton waters on board the tall-ship the Thalassa or enjoy a trip on the show’s very own mini cruise ship, Ocean Scene.

Stand up paddleboarding, kayaking or dinghy sailing will also be available through the show’s ‘Get Afloat’ sessions, under the expert guidance of the team from Rockley Watersports. While for those who fancy trying something bigger, Try-a-Boat in partnership with FlexiSail has a fleet of yachts and motorboats available for the youngsters to learn and practice their skills on, as part of the FlexiSail Boating Skills Session.

Tuesday 19 September also marks the start of the Superyacht UK Young Designer competition, sponsored by Marine Resources.  In the afternoon visiting school children are invited to come along and see these exciting and dynamic designers in action as they show off their design flair and bring their ideas to life on stand J407.

“It is invaluable to engage with young people, so they build an early understanding of what careers are available within the sector and that way we secure a pipeline of skilled talent for the future”, Lesley added.

“Our training team are working incredibly hard to support people working in the sector and to develop the skills for the workforce of the future, and these great events are just some of the ways we are working hard to support people already in the industry or thinking about working in the sector.”

For more information contact

Get your ticket

Tickets for the Boat Show can be purchased online at

Upgrade your visit with the new and exclusive Quayside Club VIP package at

The show is open from 10am – 6pm daily except the final Sunday when the show will close at 5pm.


More news from All At Sea