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M/Y My Aurora Sole Engineer Awarded Seahub Grant

14 September 2021By Laura Shaughnessy

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Laura Shaughnessy

Laura Shaughnessy has been the managing editor at Dockwalk since February 2018. Having grown up among the cornfields, she is ecstatic to be among the boats in the yachting capital of the world. Armed with a bachelor’s degree in communications and a master’s in journalism, 15 years of experience with newspapers, magazines, and the online world, Laura has joined a great crew. When not writing about superyacht crew, she’s hanging out with her husband and their German Shepherd, working on house projects, or binging on Netflix.

In August, Sole Engineer Jackson Pinney of 120-foot Nordhavn M/Y My Aurora was awarded the first Seahub Engineering Grant, which was offered to help yacht engineers with their development into the industry. There were more than 200 applicants.

Sam Wheaton, Seahub co-founder and former superyacht chief engineer, comments that it was great to see how many captains and chief engineers nominated engineers who they work with or have worked with. “Jackson is the ideal fit for what we wanted to do with the grant — get behind a young engineer who is keen to learn from school and those around him,” Wheaton says. The engineer, who first became superyacht crew in summer 2019, is planning to use the grant funds to go towards his USCG QMED.

The grant, which puts $3,000 towards engineering courses at the winner’s chosen school, gives access to Seahub’s database of 5,000 OEM manuals, provides PMS education, and taps into the company’s network of captains, engineers, yacht managers, and placement agencies. The Seahub team mentors the winner to help with everything from technical support, advice on best contractors, and everything yachting. The mentorship is long term for as long as the winner chooses to take advantage of it.

“Whether it is learning a new skill or countless hours of troubleshooting, there is always a problem to be solved,” Pinney says.

“When I first heard about the grant, I realized how rare of an opportunity it was,” Pinney says. “It is practically unheard of in the industry for grants and scholarships [to go] towards education,” he says. Calling Seahub a leader for how it supports the next generation of engineers, Pinney adds that he hopes this is a concept that hopefully starts a new trend of this happening more regularly.

“It’s a great feeling to know that I have the support and mentorship from these guys and their team. I hope more opportunities like this open up throughout the industry to help develop young crew just like Seahub has done for me. I hope to pay it forward to the next person somewhere down the line to continue what they started!”

This isn’t a casual career path that Pinney fell into. “Engineering has been a passion of mine because it allows me to live and work through curiosity, creativity, and always affords something new to learn. Whether it is learning a new skill or countless hours of troubleshooting, there is always a problem to be solved,” he says, adding, “Sometimes it can be fun and sometimes it can be exhaustive and hair-pullingly frustrating, but in the end, there is no better feeling than when you finally find the answer to a problem that truly challenged you.”

The company, a planned maintenance system designed specifically for the yachting industry, plans to make this an annual grant.

This column is taken from the October 2021 issue of Dockwalk.

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