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Ydesia Mallari: Growing as a seafarer


TIP FROM THE CREW: Staying enthusiastic about company core values and heeding for your profession – that’s Ydesia Mallari’s best tip for growing as a seafarer.

Ydesia Lei Mallari (27) is an ex-cadet in Solvang, who is now working as 3rd engineer on Clipper Saturn. According to managers and colleagues, Ydesia is among the representatives of Solvang’s future, being friendly, proud, skilled and showing human strength to counter any challenge.

This interview with the dedicated young professional was made while she crossed the Atlantic on a voyage from Marcus Hook Philadelphia, to Sines Portugal.

From the Philippines to Denmark

Where did you grow up, and how did you end up working on a ship?
“I grew up in the Philippines, in Angeles City, Pampanga. At the age of 16, the family moved north to Bolinao, Pangasinan. Fortunately enough, I was admitted to the NSA Scholarship, where I entered Solvang’s cadetship program. From 2015 to 2019 I took a B.Sc. in Marine Engineering at Davao Merchant Marine Academy”.

How was your first day as a cadet onboard Clipper Star, back in 2018?
“It was June 18, and the vessel was anchored in Skagen, Denmark. When I embarked, I was nervous yet full of excitement, eager to learn and explore the real world of the profession I was pursuing. On board, we were given full sets of PPEs, then familiarization was conducted with a checklist. The chief officer guided us through equipment, emergency procedures, designated mustering stations
and much more”, Ydesia says, and adds:
“The very same night they threw us a welcoming party with karaoke, introducing the cadets to the crew. Everyone on board was very friendly and approachable. There was a sense of harmony, which put the first-timers at ease.”

Being away from home

What opportunities did you get in Solvang, and what sacrifices did you make?

“Sailing high standard vessels with a skilled crew is a clear opportunity for my growth as a seafarer. Through the crew, I developed my confidence and skills to advance my career.

Of sacrifices, I must endure being away from loved ones and missing out on special events, in order to achieve my goals. Seafaring is not an easy profession, yet it is fulfilling and satisfying to overcome the challenges that it presents.”

You have served as a wiper, motorman and engineer. Currently, you are 3rd engineer on Clipper Saturn. What does a work shift look like for you?

“The shift starts with a morning safety meeting or tool box talk were we discuss the work with the engineers together with the engine ratings. Afterwards, I brief the 2nd engineer on my work order and bring it into accordance with the planned maintenance system (PMS). We create a work permit and carry out a risk assessment before preparing tools and spare parts for the job. After completing the work, I report to the Star IPS and PMS.” 

Working as a group

How do you practice mutual respect, team spirit and quality on board?

“After having spent some time on board, I noticed that the crew practice these values with a sense of enthusiasm. From the senior crew, I observe no hesitation to acquire new knowledge. As a group, we accomplish complicated jobs without any sense of toxicity.”

What is your message to colleagues across Solvang’s fleet?

“I want to encourage my colleagues across the fleet to continuously embody our company core values and to keep an endless dedication towards your profession. This helps alleviate any friction between crew members, it heightens output and improves the company as a whole”, Ydesia says.