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Maritime Educational Foundation (MEF)

the challenge

MEF wanted to maximise the number of officer cadets completing their training. Statistics highlighted that retention rates of cadets across the maritime industry was low due to the mismatch of expectations of preparations for life at sea.

Our result

Retention rates have improved by 43% since MEF began their programme with Outward Bound.

2002 - 2013 : 68% retention rate
2013 - 2016 : 97% retention rate

What we did

Together we developed a pre-college induction course for MEF's officer cadets. Purposely positioned at the start of their three year training programme, this four-day programme instils a sense of MEF identity and builds the cadets' support network. Introducing the trainees to each other and the MEF core values at this early stage, makes their transition from home and school to independence at college and later to life at sea much easier.

I BELIEVE THE OUTWARD BOUND COURSE WAS INSTRUMENTAL IN PREPARING THESE CADETS FOR COLLEGE AND INSTILLING VALUES SUCH AS RESOURCEFULNESS, RESPECT AND RESPONSIBILITY
Kate Gillespie, MEF Strategy Manager

Every element of the programme is designed to allow the cadets to explore and develop their understanding of MEF's values and behaviours required at sea.

  • Respect - for self and others develops throughout the week as they live, eat and work together
  • Responsibility - awareness that their future success and failure rests with themselves
  • Resourcefulness - increasing levels of ingenuity and inventiveness are required to solve problem

Kate Gillespie, MEF Strategy Manager shares one example of how the learning from the programme was immediately demonstrated by the officer cadets:

“They had missed two days of college to be able to attend the course, which is absolutely fine, and when I emailed the college to find out if they had caught up – helped the cadets out with what they’d missed – they came back and said the cadets themselves had already done it, they’re the most proactive group of cadets they’d ever had.”

About MEF

MEF is a shipping industry charitable organisation who promote education and training in maritime skills. They aim to sponsor 40 officer trainees for careers across the Merchant Navy each year.

www.meftraining.org

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