BRAZIL-born Helena DeCarlos worked as a deckhand on the Rainbow Warrior before deciding to study in Launceston at the Australian Maritime College.
She always knew she wanted to live an adventurous life.
"Your interests guide you, so trust your interests," she said.
This led her to gain significant sea-faring experience "hitch-hiking" on boats, before applying for a position as a deckhand on the Greenpeace ship Rainbow Warrior, on which she worked for three years.
It was on this ship that she got to meet and sail with Thom Yorke, from Radiohead, someone she described as "awesome, a really cool guy".
"It was a brand-new build so I was on the Rainbow Warrior's maiden voyage," she said.
"What I like about seafaring is that it brings people from all different walks of life together, who have this common thing with the boat - it's your home and your workplace and you have to make it work."
Ms DeCarlos said she realised that she wanted to professionalise her experiences and started looking for further career options, which led her to AMC.
This is where she completed her Deck Watchkeeper ticket that will enable her to be an officer on any vessel in the world.
It also led her to a totally new and different shore-based job at the AMC as a research assistant.
"We are given so many options and are told anything is possible and it can be overwhelming.
"My advice is to take action, which can open up other opportunities.
"You can't predict where it goes but uncertainty is OK and pushing through your comfort zone to challenge yourself is when you increase your confidence."
WHEN Sam Calvert graduates from the Australian Maritime College he is headed for Norway.
As part of his studies he obtained an international work placement at Ocean Installer, a contracting company which provides marine engineering and construction services in Norway.
He was offered a job as project engineer.
Mr Calvert has some advice for Launceston’s youth.
‘‘I tell as many people as I can — try not to rush into going to university,’’ Mr Calvert said.
‘‘You have to go out and get life experience to work out what you really want to do. You have to get a feel for what the real world is like, of what working is like. Going to uni and doing something that you are not interested in, or just doing something for the sake of it, (isn’t the best).’’
Mr Calvert completed college and spent four years in the workforce before deciding to return to student life.
He was 23 when he enrolled in the Co-Operative Engineering Program, which allowed Mr Calvert to find work placements across the country and within the industry, and get paid for that work placement while learning on the job.
‘‘It is co-operation between school and businesses which gives students the edge and makes them so much more employable. You are graded on your work placements, you get a pass, credit, distinction or high distinction.’’
His job in Norway will be installing and removing flexible risers, which are tools that carry oil and gas from underground to the surface.
‘‘I never envisioned I would be doing this,’’ he said.
‘‘The good thing is that there are lots of AMC connections and alumni around the world and it has such a good reputation.
‘‘I pinch myself sometimes, thinking about what I’ve done.’’
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