November 8, 2006 - MANILLA, Philippines. Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha Ltd. ("K" Line) has participated in a program ("K" Line Bridge Program) begun in March 2006 for engineering college graduates of the Philippines to obtain seafarer's competency certificates, thus being the first Japanese Shipping company to undertake such an endeavor. We employed graduates from the Technological University of the Philippines-Visayas, a national (state-managed) university, and continued their training at VMA Global College, a Philippine mercantile marine college (formerly known as Visayan Maritime Academy).
The first graduates consisting of 18 students, finished a six-month course at VMA Global College and then went on to undergo a month's training at KMTC ("K" Line Maritime Training Corporation) and two ship management companies namely KLSM ("K" Line Ship Management) and TNKC (Taiyo Nippon Kisen.). A graduation ceremony was held for the group on October 26 (see picture below). The graduates of the program will continue alternately as Cadets on board of the "K" Line fleet and are to acquire Marine Engineer's Certification after completion of a year's apprenticeship at sea.
Adoption of the Bridge Program was the first trial but was completed successfully owing to full cooperation by VMA and the effort of our local staff members who made monthly visits to the college and conducted periodical progress checks.
We have decided to fund the establishment of a "K" Line Classroom at VMA; so that training under the Bridge Program may be carried out more effectively with an optimal educational environment, by re-modeling the classroom and installing audio-visual aids including PCs, TV & Video players, projectors and screens, and an air-conditioning system.
Following the graduation ceremonies of the first group, we shall begin selection of 24 students by carrying out a screening test on October 27 for the second group of graduates.
We plan to start desk exercises for them on November 16 at VMA College.
Under the concept of the "K Line Maritime Academy," we are committed to developing and expanding the "K" Line Bridge Program and the "K" Line Classroom more actively, as a means to foster engineers and as a measure to secure capable seafarers who can support our safety operations.