News

Valuable experience
gained through JL internships

Aug 28 2014
Hans Benjamin Carter and Sylvia Siqing Liu

 

Mr Hans Benjamin Carter and Ms Liu Siquing just recently concluded their ten-week internship with J. Lauritzen Singapore, which included a visit to the Head office in Copenhagen. In the interview below they comment on the experience and reflect on some of the advantages of working in the shipping industry.

What are your thoughts on your internship with J. Lauritzen?

Hans Benjamin Carter:
The past 10 weeks have been both an amazing opportunity to learn but also a whole load of fun as well. In terms of learning the ropes, I was initially fearful that that my lack of maritime education and experience would put me at a disadvantage. However I was proven wrong as J. Lauritzen taught me the foundation required to work in a ship-owning company. Though 10 weeks may seem very short, I have learnt more in the past 10 weeks as compared to my 3 years at the university.

One of the highlights of the internship, was being given the opportunity to rotate through the different departments such as chartering, operations, finance, legal and technical departments. This made each day in J. Lauritzen a new learning experience that was dynamic and very engaging as we met the various specialists from each department, who gave us a, overview of their roles.

Sylvia Siqing Liu:
I really appreciated the hands-on experience that the internship offered us. For instance during my stay in the Lauritzen Kosan, I was taught on voyage estimation and calculation, weather routing, appointing agents and issuing invoices. My colleagues walked me through tasks like calculating demurrage and instructing master.  I followed up on the offer and counter-offer process with the Kosan chartering team. Furthermore one of the chartering managers gave me the opportunity to overhear a phone conversation with one of the brokers; this helped me gain first-hand experience in a dealing and negotiating process.

Hans Benjamin Carter:
In addition, to ensure that we had a clear goal in our learning process, we were given projects to complete and present to the respective presidents of the 2 business units Lauritzen Bulkers and Lauritzen Kosan by the end of the one-month stint in Copenhagen. What initially felt daunting became an enjoyable one, as all the colleagues we interviewed for the project were more than willing to go the extra mile for us. It was also a great platform to put everything we have learned during our stay into practice. 
 
Why do you find a career in shipping/the maritime industry interesting?

Hans Benjamin Carter:
For someone without a maritime related degree, I was initially apprehensive about the contributions I could make to an industry that I deem as technical. However during my stint with J. Lauritzen, I found that to be untrue! I was able to apply many of the concepts I have learnt in business school and apply them across the different departments that I had an opportunity to work with.
Shipping is the lifeblood of International Trade and Globalization and thus it is truly an international business where you get to meet people from all walks of life and of different nationalities. Monday you can be talking to a shipbroker from London, and on Tuesday you are fixing a vessel to China and on Wednesday you are working with a port agent from the Netherlands.

Sylvia Siqing Liu:
What really attracted me to the shipping industry was the constant changes of the industry and the people working in the maritime sector. The  industry is so unpredictable, nobody knows if the market is going down or shooting up the next second. There are so many variables that can affect the market, from global trade to governmental financial decisions, even political relationship between countries. I am constantly updated with latest happening in the world, the hunger for greater knowledge and a sharp mind keeps me motivated in the industry. People working in the industry are open-minded and travelling to the Copenhagen headquarter gave me an opportunity to appreciate different working cultures as well. People are saying shipping is a disease: 'Once you are caught, it is very hard to escape from it'. Then I say the best part about this disease is tha it’s contagious. I got it from a some of my maritime seniors before I entered into university and now I am more than happy to spread 'the disease' among my friends and families. 

Hans Benjamin Carter currently attends Singapore Management University and is studying for his bachelor degree in Business Management. Liu Siqing is a student at Singapore Nanyang Technological University (NTU) and is currently completing her bachelor's degree in Maritime Studies.

Hans Benjamin Carter and Sylvia Liu Siqing joined J. Lauritzen Singapore through the Global Internship Award initiative. Read more about the Global Internship Award here >>> and our two students here >>>.

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