For me, it has been all about ships and the sea as far as I can think back and this is really the reason why I am where I am now, studying Maritime Business and Maritime Law at Plymouth University.
I grew up in the coastal city of Kiel (Germany) during large parts of my childhood, just next to the Kiel Canal, a very busy connection between the Baltic and North sea. Stopping at the canal and watching the ships pass by has always been a must for me. I still remember how fascinated I was when my grandfather explained to me all about the ships when visiting him in his home town Cuxhaven at the entrance of the Elbe river leading to Hamburg. During holiday trips to the German islands, I forced my mom to donate to the German Maritime Search and Rescue Association (DGzRS) and sign up for their yearly booklet so I could read all about their rescue missions and the newest technology for sea rescue cruisers.
Drawing on my passion as motivation to enter the shipping industry with a maritime degree at Plymouth University was probably one of the best decisions I have made so far. It is simply through this passion and fascination for my studies that I enjoy putting in hard work for my degree in the library every day I possibly can. I also have the great luck of benefiting from a grandfather who has been working in the shipping industry for his entire life. He does not only share the same passion with me, but is also a true mentor in all matters relating to my degree, with the right business relationships to get my foot into the industry's door. He is a sort of idol for me, still working in his high age to pursue his maritime passion, and is largely responsible for my high ambitions.
I have now come to a point in my third year where I am realising how important these factors were throughout my degree as I come to start looking towards the next step after graduation. It is a reminder to ensure that this step leads into a job or masters degree that allows me to further pursue my maritime passion and I would say this is the only way of continued success in my mind. I would advise anyone reading this to think about your passion and what you really have loved to do all your life so far. In my opinion, turning this passion into a matching degree and then later into a job is just the best way of taking advantage of the motivation and ambitions that come with such passions, and thereby it is the best investment for a happy life in the future.