PORT ST. MAARTEN – The maritime industry is the cornerstone of global trade and the life blood of the international economy, Port St. Maarten Group (PSG) pointed out, adding that more than 90 per cent of the world’s trade are carried by ships.
PSG considers the involvement of the nation’s youth in the development of the national maritime industry as a cornerstone of long-term sustainability and developing the next generation of maritime workers.
The country’s maritime industry needs a skilled and qualified workforce, and high school students need the opportunity to engage with the industry and be informed about the skills and career opportunities that can prepare them for their educational future.
PSG for the calendar year thus far has organized over 20+ tours where students were oriented via tours and presentations with different departments so they could get a better understanding about the roles of each division at Port St. Maarten.
Providing such details also includes career path opportunities throughout the maritime sector for the foreseeable future.
PSG also affords internships and summer job placements to students from high school through to College/University affording them real world experiences enabling growth and development of both knowledge as well as relevant interpersonal skills.
In addition to this PSG has participated in the National Career Fair in the Netherlands which was last attended in November 2022 and will be attended this year as well. This career fair is geared towards students and young professionals. Locally PSG also participates in an annual career fair whereby all 3rd and 4th formers have the opportunity to obtain information on career paths within PSG and hear directly from various members of staff about what the job entails.
PSG also hosted its first ‘bring your kids to school day’ which took place on July 13. The children of PSG staff received a full facility tour and introduction to the various departments.
The children also got the opportunity to take a tour with the water taxi to downtown and there were some fun activities arranged during their tour at Port St. Maarten.
K1 Britannia Foundation’s second chance program is another area where PSG partners with, contributing to youth having a second chance at education and furthermore work placement allocation pending the area of interest of the youth enrolled in the program.
PSG also engages in Youth sailing and partners with programs through sponsorship of students and efforts that afford them sailing exposure.
Shipping is considered the most efficient form of cargo and goods transport.
Port St. Maarten caters to more than 1000 ship movements annually related to the import of cargo and goods as well as the cruise ship sector that brings in hundreds of thousands of guests yearly, making it the busiest seaport in the Northeastern Caribbean.
PSG adds that shipping affects every aspect of St. Maarteners lives on a daily basis even though it may not always be apparent; from the food we eat, the drinks we drink, electronics, furniture, construction and building materials, the energy that the country consumes, the clothes that we wear and the cars that we drive.
All the above must be transported to the island by ship. Once the cargo and goods arrive, they have to be offloaded by cranes or driven off Roll-On Roll-Off ships and transported across the island to customers.
Creating awareness is of critical importance to PSG as the entire workflow requires persons with various skillsets and thus early stimulation of this awareness is what PSG aims to provide.
The country’s maritime industry employs a considerable number of people who work for companies that support the entire sector and PSG would like to ensure that the future is lead by passionate, dynamic, and educated young people of the nation.
PSG takes this opportunity to thank all the students that have participated in internships and summer jobs, for their contribution, and wishing them the best for the new school year.