SMA News

Two former Scottish Maritime Academy students, Haydn McLeod from Peterhead and Ryan Corbett from Durness were recently awarded the joint title of Young Fisherman of the Year at the 2018 Fishing News Awards Ceremony. They were chosen from a shortlist of young fishermen across the UK and Ireland and voted for by representatives of the fishing industry.

Both attended the Academy earlier in the year to complete their Deck Officer Class 2 qualification.

Centre Manager Linda Hope comments, “I am delighted that Ryan and Haydn have jointly won this prestigious award which is voted for by peers in the industry. Both excelled in their studies at the Academy and I am thrilled that their hard work, effort and determination on shore and at sea has been recognised.”

The Scottish Maritime Academy is the nautical centre of excellence of North East Scotland College. It offers maritime training across the Merchant Navy and Fishing sectors. It offers courses for new entrants and for experienced seafarers who wish to refresh knowledge and/or progress to the next level. The Academy is an approved training provider for the Maritime & Coastguard Agency; Merchant Navy Training Board; Association of Marine Electronic and Radio Colleges; Royal Yacht Association and Seafish.

Ryan Corbett, Sparkling Star UL 290

Ryan started as a deckie learner at 16 on his father’s boat Sparkling Star BCK29. By 18, he had completed his under-16.5m unrestricted skipper’s ticket and GMDSS general operator’s certificate. His first trip as skipper of the Sparkling Star soon followed.

In 2016, Ryan sat his Class 2 Mate’s Ticket, and was back in the wheelhouse in 2017, taking more of the boat, while his father oversaw the build of Sparkling Star UL290. Since the delivery of Sparkling Star UL290 in December 2017, Ryan has resumed his duties as skipper and continues to be very successful.

Haydn McLeod, Forever Faithful PD 289

At 16, Haydn started a 12-week trainee deckhand course with the Scottish Maritime Academy , where he excelled and was offered a job with a standby company in Aberdeen. He realised he wanted to be fishing and left for a berth on a pair-trawler. His father invested in his own boat, and Haydn undertook his 16.5m licence, taking the boat on his own for six months. He successfully undertook the Deck Officer Class 2 back at the Academy, when he was approached by Andrew West, skipper/owner of the Forever Faithful and offered a trial position as a relief skipper. Mr West is delighted with Haydn and the leadership qualities he shows. He now takes sole charge of a crew of five.

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