The Feadship yard in Makkum, Netherlands has been named as the ‘best apprentice training company’ for the painting and maintenance sector.
Feadship set up its own school three years ago in partnership with training institutes in the Netherlands during the refit of the Feadship M/Y Serena. The Craftsmen College was established with the ROC Friese Poort institute in Sneek and teaches forty people in the metalwork, painting and carpentry disciplines. Thirty of the students are Feadship staff and ten come from other local companies. Feadship provides its own teachers, trained and supervised by the ROC, which also sends class lecturers.
“Feadship is well known for building the finest motoryachts in the world, and our goal is that the people who build them are equally renowned,” said Japke van Groning, manager of Craftsmen College. “The prizes we are winning are an acknowledgement of its success. In addition to being named as best training company in the Netherlands, we also won the 2013 painting awards in the Netherlands and are in the running to do the same again this year. In addition, one of our apprentice carpenters – Dennis Cornelissen – has just won a medal for ‘excellent craftsmanship’ at EuroSkills 2014.”
About 450 workers from 25 countries competed in October in EuroSkills, Europe’s largest skills competition which was held in Lille, France.
The Feadship Craftsmen College also includes Feadship staff.
“This combination of people of all ages makes for an excellent cross-pollination of ideas and influences,” Van Groning said. “Young apprentices and experienced workers learn to speak the same language, pushing the overall craftsmanship levels to an even higher level. We are also increasing people’s knowledge of materials, their understanding of the overall engineering processes, and their ability to communicate in English with captains and crew.”
“We are obviously very proud of the industry-leading quality of the yachts we build at all three Feadship yards,” said Sijbrand de Vries, director of the Feadship yard in Makkum. “However, superyachts are becoming ever more complex and there is an increased requirement for more people to work simultaneously on different areas of the construction process. The Craftsmen College is facilitating a further enhancement of efficiency and quality, and the results have exceeded all our expectations.”