Belgian Student Visit to Steamship Mutual - November 2017

January 2018

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Training and education are important features of life at Steamship Mutual. Our staff participate in training, lectures and seminars at our various offices and also offer seminar and lectures to members. In addition we have been pleased to assist in the training of student groups. The Law Faculty of the University of Ghent, led by Professor Eddy Somers started the tradition of taking students to London in the late 1980's. They have been visiting Steamship Mutual since the academic year 2013-2014, and in November 2017 visited the Club for the fifth time in a row. The trip now takes place under the umbrella of the Master of Science in Maritime Science, an inter-university programme developed by Ghent University (UGent) and the University of Brussels (VUB).  The course is aimed “…. at students from diverse academic backgrounds, who have a common passion for maritime transport and already hold a Master degree.” 

The trip to London is an integral part of their course and each year several employees of the Port Authority of Ghent join the students exploring the world of maritime transportation in a direct way giving the theoretical knowledge they acquire a practical dimension. The London trip includes visits to institutions like the IMO, Intertanko,  IOPCF and IMB, Lloyd’s Register, INMARSAT. Included in the programme is a visit to a P&I Club and we are proud that for the fifth year in a row, the Maritime Science course chose to visit Steamship Mutual. Steamship’s Correspondent & Communications Manager, Neil Gibbons hosted the visited during which the students were shown the “A Team Effort” film (now available on the “Team Effort” App) as well as hearing presentations on claims from syndicate manager Alex Towell and underwriting from Syndicate Executive Fern Rogers.   

A call at a P&I Club adds an essential link to the chain of our visits. P&I Clubs play a role which is often not fully understood even by people who are close to the shipping business. Our students would be missing a vital piece of information if we left this out of the picture”, explains Jean-Louis Vandevoorde, practical assistant at the University of Ghent. “That is where the Steamship Mutual steps in. The presentations we are given by their people give us the touch and feel of what P&I is all about and what the issues are in their field of activity. We are always very happy – and grateful – to come back to Steamship Mutual. They always do a perfect job at bringing our group at the core of the P&I matter.”