TNTA has provided me with the opportunity to expand my network while travelling to new places
Vikesh Chand Rai graduated from cohort 4 of the TNTA programme and is currently a Third Officer with Maersk Tankers.
Reason for joining the maritime industry:
Vikesh held a Diploma in Maritime Business and learnt about the TNTA programme through the newspapers. He was inspired to join TNTA by his former boss who was previously a ship captain.
Influence of TNTA on his life:
TNTA has provided him with the opportunity to expand his network while travelling to new places. In addition, there is greater job stability and lesser competition for the same job as he is working for a global community.
Vikesh aspires to be a Ship Captain one day and eventually, a lecturer to educate the next generation of seafarers in the maritime industry.
Memorable times on board the ship:
In order to facilitate bonding among the crew, the Captain usually organizes swimming pool/ BBQ parties to create a positive working environment. The crews also make it a point to celebrate birthdays onboard the vessel, which makes them feel like the vessel is a second home. Vikesh also enjoys exploring new places when he gets his shore leave
Challenges faced on board the ship:
The communication barrier with other nationalities is definitely a challenge he faces on-board. As time goes by, Vikesh realised that the key to overcoming this challenge is to treat all crew as his family and to share problems with one another so as to avoid unnecessary confrontation. He feels it is important to adapt to the different environment and work styles on every ship he sails on.
Misconceptions of sailing:
Vikesh highlighted that in the past, shore leaves were for weeks or months. But in today growing maritime industry, vessel turnaround time is crucial and shore leave can be as short as a few days or hours. Additionally, one must be prepared for shift works as there are no fixed working hours onboard a ship.
Sailing at sea has taught Vikesh the importance of ownership, taking care of his own well-being and to be accountable for any responsibilities he holds as an officer.