Any westlawn or yds grad actually working in the industry???

Discussion in 'Education' started by fede, Sep 9, 2003.

  1. SailDesign
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    SailDesign Old Phart! Stay upwind..

    Guest says "Some people have made a success, but know well what you are getting into."

    I think this can be summed up by the ogt-repeated but accurate saying "If you want to make a small fortune in yacht design, start with a large one and retire early."

    If, however, you want a career that will keep you happy, let you enjoy work, and get paid to sail occasionally on other people's boats, then try very hard to get there. It is a long road, and one that will be filled with strange little jobs for even stranger people (not that any of _my_ customers fit that.. ;-) )

  2. L.DOSSO
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    L.DOSSO Junior Member

    I hope, Guest"southampton", that when you tell us about ABYC training,then you do not mean Westlawn yacht design syllabus,because this one is not an alternative to a pure design program.Westlawn Y.D.course is a pure design program,I am sorry.The second point is that there should exist one group/marine engineers,then a second group/yacht designers and a third group yacht stylists.And please do not mix the three together!The third thing I want to add is that in France,it is a huge disorder:guys from engineering schools take the work of people who graduate from Y.D course West/yacht &powercraft design South.and finally the future of yacht design in france do not exist.French yacht design is dead in the egg.Nothing goes,France will never be a great country of yacht design§
  3. Guest

    Guest Guest

    ABYC Training

    ABYC offers training for surveyors, marine electricians and others as well as Westlawn.

    The other training programs are considerably older (with ABYC). It is because they do this other training that they decided to buy Westlawn.
  4. L.DOSSO
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    L.DOSSO Junior Member

    OKGuest "ABYC training",I did not know that ABYC has offered trainings for Surveyor&electricians.I am a bit nervous this time.TAKE CARE .LUCAS
  5. Guest

    Guest Guest

    See ABYC website

    Marine Technician Certification:

    Fiberglass Repair Certification: Partner.htm

    Seminars: The ABYC education program has two and three day seminars on technical subjects such as electrical systems, marine corrosion, accident investigation, and standards accreditation that are offered nationally. ABYC offers over 30 education programs a year:

  6. CDBarry
    Joined: Nov 2002
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    CDBarry Senior Member

    Yacht Design vs Naval Architecture

    I don't understand why graduates of engineering courses are disqualified from designing yachts.

    From what I have seen and based on NAs working in yacht design I have known, (Mull, Antrim, Pedrick, Blount, Sponberg, etc. ...) it seems to me that a degreed naval architect is at least as well qualified as a non-degreed yacht designer, and definitely more so for complex yachts such as the top levels of competitive sailing yachts or large motor yachts.
  7. ErikG
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    ErikG Senior Member

    NA's and Yacht designers...

    It takes neither to be able to design a well behaved and beautiful yacht!

    But when it comes to laminate design and analysys, weight optimization for race yachts and complex solutions that are on the bleeding edge...
    You'd better understand ALL of the implications onboard when you change stuff. And extensive knowledge is the key.

    How you get it is (almost) irrelevant, but getting help to learn it (ie eduction)is obviously the best way. I don't think my very eventual completion of YDS (or Westlawn) will cover ALL the knowledge that's needed to work on an AC campaign. But it will cover the basis. Then it's up to me to get the additional knowledge will be needed with the kind of boats I design.
    If you want to do advanced laminate analysis and write your own VPP and work with CFD or FEA, your definetly better off with both a university engineering degree AND a yacht design education.

    my 2 swedish kronas [dang no euros here]
  8. fede
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    fede Senior Member

    I`ve been watching you guys...
    So far, the picture I get is very blurred...
    Nobody showed up saying "Hey I`m a westlawn/yds grad and I do this, this and that.."
    I agree with those saying that you don`t need an Engineering deg. to work in the small yachts design field, I agree with those saying that an eng. deg. + a YDS is what should be done... duh....
    Spoke with some NA in my country and they told me Westlawn is a known and respected school, what does that mean in terms of job opportunities I couldn`t find out...
    If I have to enroll in a school like westlawn or yds just because I have a passion and I would like to know more on the subject I would enroll into a 3 yrs course here in Italy that`s gonna cost me 1000 euros!
    If I choose Westlawn it is because it`s going to pay back my 10000 $$$$$$ with work after it...
    Spoke also with an Architect (not naval, straight architect) a while ago, and he told me that many arch. working these days Do not have a deg. in arch.!!! many are self trained...
    That confused me even more...
    (still very confused)
  9. SailDesign
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    SailDesign Old Phart! Stay upwind..

    You mentioned that a NA you had spoken with said that "Westlawn is a known and respected school, what does that mean in terms of job opportunities I couldn`t find out..."
    I think the answer is that it gives the employer a notion of where you are in the range of educations available. Actually getting a job is a combination of many things, not the least of which is being in the right place at the right time. Sad but true..
  10. Willallison
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    Willallison Senior Member

    Frederico, I'm 1/2 way through the Westlawn course. I chose it over the yds because I felt that it had better reputation within the industry. Having said that, a number of na's who run their own offices that I've spoken to say they generally only hire engineers because they can teach you how to draw a boat, but not the more technical engineering aspects of design.

    Then again, if you want examples of westlawn grads working in the industry take a look at the testimonials on their website
    or take a look at the ads by designers in the back of Passagemaker magazine or similar - proof that at least some fulfill their dreams.....;)
  11. Limey
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    Limey Junior Member

    I've been following this thread for sometime now
    As a Southampton Institute grad now working in the States for one of the large builders (in management now) we will not hire people without an engineering degree to do the engineering on our boats. Ideally I would hire a NA from Michigan/Webb etc, second choice would be a mechanical engineer (preferably with an interest in boats). The Westlawn or YDS grad would not qualify for an interview unless they also had an engineering degree.

    The designers who work for me all have degrees from the major Industrial design courses (CCS in Detroit, Art Center in L.A.) and are responsible for styling and ergonomics.

    All our hires (designers and engineers) must also be proficient in CAD (although not necessarily the actual systems we use)

    Westlawn and YDS will teach you how to draw boats and follow basic engineering principles but will not impart the basic engineering fundamentals in many different disciplines that will be used during a career designing AND ENGINEERING boats.
  12. L.DOSSO
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    L.DOSSO Junior Member

    Calm down Lime.Oh ,excuse me many people work for you!Do management and let boat designers do their job that is to design pleasure boats.Iwould be in favour of a max;size given to yacht designers,only pleasure crafts:27 meters loa.PLease my friend of wetslawn,yacht designers,an aspiring yacht designers give me the address of Society of boat and Yacht designers SO I will become a member.ME,PE,and NA do not want to hire us? I am fed up with them.The site here is boat so people who don't like boat and yacht designers can go away.We don't need you.Go on sname! lucas,westlawn grad.
  13. BVI Jon
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    BVI Jon Junior Member


    First, I would like to thank you for your post. Regardless of opinion, you gave some very useful information applicable to this thread. You gave valuable insight as a hirer of people in this area.

    I have been in the marine industry for 20 years, and am following the Westlawn route for "Professional Development", if you will. Just for personal knowledge, I would like to complete the full NA course at Mich. or UNO, but until my wife becomes rich, that won't happen.

    "The designers who work for me...Industrial Design...styling and ergonomics."

    In my opinion, many (if not most) of the production boats these days suffer from this affliction. As someone that works on, in and around these vessels on a day-to-day basis in the field, it is apparent to me that many of the people that "Engineer" them have not actually spent much time using them. And since when are yachts "Industrial"?

    By the way, my father is a Mechanical Engineer and designs boats for fun, so I am somewhat familiar with that side as well.

  14. Tad
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    Tad Boat Designer

    Limey, Dosso, and BVI have touched on something that is, I believe, an important point. There are really at least three branches to the field of "Boat Design".

    You might be an engineer, a stylist, or a yacht designer.

    This field has changed dramatically in the last twenty years. It used to be practiced by lone "yacht designers", there were about a dozen in the US. They worked alone and did whatever needed to be done. Styling just happened, engineering was by rule of thumb and prior experience, and the results were simple but highly integrated. Often very good, sometimes brilliant design work.

    But yachts have become, like much of our world, highly technical pieces of equipment. Materials and their use have become very complex (in some areas), construction methods are highly evolved, and the myriad systems and their supports are now required content. All this is wrapped in a sophisticated industrial designed package. This technology is producing consumer goods, not boats in the way I think of them. They lack a great deal, just looking at them you realize the people involved believe their own PR. They lack any sense of history, tradition, and mostly, romance. But it comes out in the lack of straightforward commonsense seamanlike detail.

    Engineers and stylists and industrial designers will never be yacht designers because sea time is not required to get their ticket. To be a competent yacht designer you must spend time on boats, not in a boatyard, (though that is good) but at sea.

    A course from Westlawn is useful if you want to be a yacht designer, but it cannot be the end of your education. Especially not in today's world. You need to know much more. But it really depends on the individual. I have worked with graduates from Webb, Southampton, the Landing School, and MMA's (short lived)yacht design program. The Webb grad was the most careless, and made the most expensive mistakes.

    The MMA grad, with an associate degree in yacht design, is the best engineer I know. In regards to the testimony of Westlawn grads, I really don't think they should call themselves naval architects. Unless you are a graduate with a degree in naval architecture, you are not a naval architect.

    As a yacht designer some of what you do will be naval architecture, some will be styling, and there will be some engineering. But anyone who comes to work in my office will not be deciding on keel position or size, or on sailplan layout. They will be detailing joiner sections, drawing furniture and perhaps hardware detail, and revising specifications. Actually designing boats will come much later.

    All the best, Tad

  15. SailDesign
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    SailDesign Old Phart! Stay upwind..

    Tad, I think you have hit the nail on the proverbial head.
    But then, we didn't expect any less from you.
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