After graduating from the Antwerp Maritime Academy, Charlotte Soetewey (23 years old) couldn’t wait to start working on mind blowing offshore projects. She applied for a job at Boskalis’ Offshore Energy division and was promoted to third officer on the Boka Falcon within six months.
“My position is as diverse as you would expect on a ‘floating workplace’, and that’s exactly what I like about working at sea”, Charlotte says. “During projects, we’re mostly focused on dynamic positioning, making sure the vessel stays in the right position. But there’s always something to do, even when we’re at anchor, such as safety checks and maintenance. Together as a crew, we make sure everything runs smoothly.”
Before Charlotte started on the Boka Falcon, she spent some time as a crew member on an anchor handling tug, which is used to tow heavy offshore constructions to their destination. Her first assignment was on the Fécamp offshore wind project just off the French coast. Boskalis played a part in installing 71 so called Gravity-Based Structures. “It’s quite an operation to tow the heavy wind turbine foundations to their final positions”, she emphasizes.
After a similar project near Scotland, Charlotte started working on the Construction Support Vessel (CSV) Boka Falcon. “CSVs are impressive ships that are fully equipped to carry out complex projects at sea”, she explains. “We’re starting a project on African waters soon. I’m really looking forward to execute work with the Boka Falcon.”
Charlotte: “What life at sea is like? Of course, you have to be comfortable with spending long periods of time away from home. But I really enjoy working hard for six weeks, followed by six weeks off. The good atmosphere on board plays a huge part in that. One of the reasons I chose for a career at Boskalis, is their special attention for fresh talent. I noticed that I got a lot of responsibilities from day one and that my colleagues are always there to help. On top of that, Boskalis arranges all kinds of courses to keep developing myself as an officer.”
As you gain experience, you get the chance to promote to second officer, chief officer and eventually to captain. “I certainly want to climb up in rank”, Charlotte concludes. “For now I have a clear ambition: spend a lot of time on the Boka Falcon, gain experience and perform impressive tasks in faraway places.”
Are you looking for an adventurous career at sea? Make your mark as Boskalis crew member.