Inspiring women at sea

DATE 25.06.2019

[imageMacros imageWidth="30" alignment="left" image="9bad6f1c-4a6d-4a73-8827-3ef0a5895518"/]Q: What inspired you to become a seafarer?

A: As a young woman, I envisioned myself to be many things, but as I grew older, I was inspired to be a seafarer by my father and brother. So I studied in the University of Cebu METC and took my Bachelor of Science in Marine Transportation. In my third year, I was able to board a vessel, Höegh Morning Meridian as a Deck Cadet.

Q: How did people react when you decided to take a career at sea?

A: When I decided to take the path of being a seafarer most people doubted I could accomplish this. I remember one of my relatives saying to me that they doubted I would even finish school, because it was not the usual thing for females. It was inculcated in my mind and I took it as a challenge. It is the dedication that wins in the end.

Q: What is the secret to your success?

A: Sheer determination and hard work. I aspired to be great and as a result, I was able to graduate as Magna Cum Laude. I passed my board exam in 2011, and was able to join my next vessel, Hoegh Copenhagen as OS. Over the next three years I took on the position as Third Officer and Second Officer. I was recommended as Chief Officer in 2017 and knowing the responsibility that comes with the position, I wanted to be ready when I finally accepted it. And so I studied hard and passed all prerequisites with commendation (Trim and Stability, CES, HACAP). And now here I am. There was no secret to how I got to be where I am now. All I did was give my best in everything I do. And now, my goal is to inspire other female seafarers to believe in themselves. Because, if men can do it, so can we.

Q: What is your message to women who want to pursue a career at sea?

A: For those women who plan to become a seafarer, be ready to face the waves that can cast your fears away. As the seafaring industry is conventionally a man's world, many women fear to take it up as a profession. However, I believe fear is nothing but only a product of our imagination. If you believe in yourself and if you have strong determination nothing is unachievable. When you want it, study and work hard for it; but expect the unexpected because sometimes the wheel of life doesn’t always go to what we want. One needs to be prepared mentally, physically and emotionally before choosing this as a profession. It requires strength and courage but with a positive attitude and approach you can do it.

Watch the video below, where Monalisa shares three tips to women who are thinking of a career at sea.

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