The U.K. government’s Maritime and Coastguard Agency visited Fort Lauderdale during the first week of April, undertaking the oral examinations required in order to attain a U.K. MCA Certificate of Competence. The MCA’s Chief Examiner and Head of Seafarer Services and Ship Registration, Captain Roger Towner, conducted the examinations himself. Oral exams are required by the MCA in addition to completion of all of the MCA training courses. They can last up to two hours during which time the examiner can ask the candidate anything that is on the syllabus.
“The candidates worked extremely hard, several having rushed from their busy lives aboard yachts, straight into the classroom for oral preparation”, said Jim Cartlidge IYT’s Head of Training. IYT CEO Mike French added, “We are absolutely delighted that close to 80% of the candidates passed the exam which is a high success rate, but we still want to improve upon that in October.”
The MCA has agreed to visit Fort Lauderdale twice a year in April and just prior to the FLIBS in October. Several companies sponsored the oral preparation week providing the students with lunches and of course, moral support.
“The MCA’s renewed commitment to visit Fort Lauderdale is very important both to the students who have options as to how and where they undertake their oral preparations and to the local yachting community as a whole,” said Mike French. “We would encourage everyone to keep Fort Lauderdale on the yachting map as a destination. It seems to have been surpassed by other locations that are not nearly as well adapted to yachting.”