Q&A with Engine Cadet Vicky Alderwick

20 May 2021 By Erica Lay

Owner of international crew agency EL CREW CO in Mallorca, Spain, Erica has been a freelance writer since 2008. She loves engaging with the projects she works on, diving headfirst into the research, investigation, and production of the stories she feels are newsworthy. A curious and proactive journalist, she draws on her own life experiences, her studies, and her work with crew all over the globe.

Engine Cadet Vicky Alderwick

Name: Vicky Alderwick
Position: Engine Cadet
Yacht: Commercial (Cruise)
Years in Current Position: 2
Years in Industry: 7
Previous Vessels: Private
Nationality: British – Currently in Croatia

I got my start in yachting because of a break up gone bad. It was the perfect escape, and I’m SO happy in hindsight — it has led to some incredible opportunities and memories!

If I weren’t on a yacht, I’d do something that would allow me to be home as much as possible. I’ve always wanted to open a car mechanic shop and employ female mechanics because I remember how daunting it was for me to take my car in when I was younger. I’d like it to be a place where women were confident to ask questions without the fear of looking stupid.

The most challenging part of the job is not being able to be home for some family occasions, etc.

My worst mechanical failure as an engineer happened at our sewage treatment plant bursting a pipe…. I don’t think I need to say much more.

The biggest issue facing yacht engineers today is constantly having to keep on top of changing regulations and legislation. Of course, it’s all in the interest of safety and looking after the planet, which is totally worth it!

My advice to those looking to get started is not to give up. You will get there, one step at a time.

My advice to impress on the job is … don’t try to impress too much! Don’t overdo it. Be confident in what you can do, and trust that people will pick up on your individual qualities.

Something I’ve learned about myself through yachting is how hard I’m willing to work to get somewhere — I didn’t know I had it in me!

My most significant achievement is that I will soon be achieving my EOOW CoC! Not long now! [To clarify, Vicky is a yacht engineer, but has gone commercial to get the big boat seatime for her commercial ticket (the EOOW). Once she has that, she’ll head back over into yachting.]

The best part about the job is everything! Even the 4 a.m. shifts.

This column originally ran in the May 2021 issue of Dockwalk.


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