As a 3rd Deck Officer, I’m in charge of 8-12/20-24 watch, I’m also the officer in charge of port pratiques and ISPS Pre-Arrival with Chief Mate; I also check all the Medical equipment and medicines in Ship’s Hospital and I provide, according to master instructions, assistance in case of injuries on board. I am the Officer in charge of publications, charts and ECDIS Maintenance and everything about Bridge Equipments. During approach operations I am in charge of forward manoeuvering station, I provide communications between bridge, Deck Crew and Mooring Man’s.
What I love most is that everyday there is a new challenge to face; new scenarios during navigation, traffic situations and different crew members to work with every contract. The best part is that you learn something new in every moment you spend on board, from all the people you work with and from the people you meet along the way.
Sometimes, especially when I became 3rd Officer at 20 years old, I felt that I was treated like a child and that they didn’t respect me or my opinion on anything concerning work stuff. After realizing that those feelings were true, I’ve started to work harder, study more about all the things that I wasn’t confident about and I’ve started communicating better and more with my AB on duty, Bosun and Crew involved in my maneuvering station. After speaking about all my concerns and listening to all their needs, We‘ ve finally started to work as a team and I felt day by day more appreciation and respect from them, as leader and as a fellow Crew member working with them.
One thing I would advocate for female seafarers is to get more space on all types of vessels, all over the world: in 2022 it is unacceptable to get “you are a woman, we don’t hire women in this company” as an answer. I strongly believe that anyone should get a job, or at least one opportunity to show their value and, for women, to prove them wrong: we deserve what we have, our position as Deck or Engine Officers and all that we will get in the future.
My advice to other female seafarers is don’t be scared to speak and express your opinion or your thoughts: on a vessel everyone, man on woman is a part of a big family and all of us matter. Follow your dream, go ahead and don’t ever look back.