After working for the Vanuatu Navy for nearly a decade Hickson Sibu was looking for ways to further his career.

After attended some of the short courses run by the University of Tasmania’s Australian Maritime College (AMC), he had seen first-hand what the institute has to offer. Sparking interest in further study he applied, and was accepted for, an AUSAID scholarship.

‘I have always worked with my hands. I know the workings of an engine better than most people, but the theoretical side has been a big step. The University of Tasmania’s (UTAS) Foundation Program was vitally important for me. Although I am an engineer in my country, I had never done maths, physics and chemistry. The subjects were all new to me. It was difficult, but I managed to get through.’

Obtaining an Ausaid scholarship has changed his family’s life. He relocated his family to Tasmania whilst he studied and both of his children went to a local school. ‘My daughter now speaks English better than me. It’s been a great experience for them at a vital time of their lives.’

As part of my Ausaid contract Hickson was required to go back to Vanuatu and share what he learnt  in Tasmania, believing this was very important.  ‘There is a lot of need for developing countries like Vanuatu to grown in many areas – economic, social, environmental and political. But, our big problem is that we have limited resources, so I think that some of the skills that I have learnt here at UTAS will help make a big contribution back home.’

The Bachelor of Applied Science (Maritime Technology Management) course offers a mixture of engineering and logistics subjects, so it will apply directly to his position with the Navy.

‘Studying at UTAS has been a very good opportunity for me. The combination of both theoretical and hands-on learning suits me. I have thoroughly enjoyed making use of the world-class suite of facilities.’

‘During my course, we regularly uses the towing tank to simulate the effects of wave energy on prototypes that we make in class. It is a great way to learn.’

‘I would recommend studying at the University of Tasmania to other international students. The staff are very helpful and always available to answer questions.‘

‘I believe that UTAS is a place where you can do whatever you want – there are so many study options available – and if you try your best, you will achieve whatever you want too.’

If you would like to further explore you career options then see our Bachelor of Applied Science (Maritime Technology Management).