A shipwright is a synonym used for shipbuilders or people engaged with shipbuilding and designing activities. However, at certain times the term shipwrights is also used to denote people who specifically engage in the construction and furbishing work of wooden boats and ships.
The profession of a shipwright is very engaging and riveting for Ship building by itself is a very fascinating field which requires a person to be very aware and alert of the updates, and most importantly extremely professional and skilful. There are a lot of developments taking place in the vessel building industry which makes it necessary for vessel builders to maintain a tandem with these developments.
A shipwright is a term more common with people who want their ships to be custom-built. Some of the boats that are designed and built by these ship builders are canoes, fishing boats and boats for ferrying cargo. The size of the boat is immaterial as these vessel builders are well-versed in the construction of both small and large boats.
Requirements to become a shipwright
In terms of educational qualifications, a person intending to become a shipwright firstly needs to have a basic high school certificate with physics and mathematics as subjects of choice. Without physics and mathematics, a person cannot understand and interpret the right calculations to build boats and ships.
In addition to the high school certificate, an individual also needs to have a degree from a maritime institute in order to become a shipwright. In the best interest of the person, an apprentice program is necessary, which would help the individual to learn and understand the specifics of building ship in a better manner. Apprentice programs continue for a longer period of time when compared to the certification programs offered by institutes. This is because, as an apprentice an individual learns the overall aspects of being a vessel wright in the most practical manner.
The programs offered for aspiring ship builders can vary anywhere between six months to 12 months and include subjects like woodwork, lofting and construction of skiffs. Apart from the knowledge gained through the program, aspiring shipwrights also need to have the following skill-sets:
- Should be highly innovative
- Should have excellent managerial abilities
- Should have excellent organisational abilities
Shipwrights essentially start their professional career as general ship builders. However, with more experience gained and with the help of specialisation in the field, a ship builder undergoes the modulation into a vessel wright.
The pay-package offered to a shipwright depends on the experience and the skill-set of an individual. Building ship is not easy. The bigger the vessel, the more the details involved. Shipwrights therefore are highly sought-after professionals for it is their skills which help to realise the evolution of an idea into actual fruition.
You may also like to read-Shipbuilding Engineer: A General Overview