Silversea’s Pioneering Expedition Training Academy Welcomes Experts From The Galapagos
Silversea has completed its third “Expedition Training Academy” –this time with five accomplished expedition guides from Silver Galapagos and two Academy trainers. Overseen by a dedicated Director, Silversea’s pioneering Expedition Training Academy has the aim of enriching guests’ travels around the world.
The rigorous month-long training began on October 5, 2019, with a 5-day Zodiac operations course, ran by Zodiac Milpro outside Annapolis, Maryland. From there, the team traveled south to Fort Lauderdale and embarked Silver Cloud for a 19-day voyage to Callao, Peru.
Over the course of the Academy, participants experienced Silver Cloud’s operations and received training on a variety of topics to further enhance their wealth of knowledge and experience. On board, the team members honed their Zodiac and seamanship skills, developed lecture presentations to bring back to the Galapagos, learned from the Expedition and shipboard teams, and shared their different approaches to operations from Silver Galapagos, as ambassadors of her equatorial operations.
The following experts participated in Silversea’s third Expedition Training Academy:
• Paulina Aguirre – Biologist, Naturalist/Guide
• Aura Banda – Environmental Manager, Naturalist/Guide
• Nicolai Bølling – Biologist, Naturalist/Guide
• Bernardo Galvez – Architect, Naturalist/Guide
• Leandro Vaca – Biologist, Naturalist/Guide
• Nicolas Danyau – Naturalist/Guide, Silversea Academy Lead Trainer
• Sarah Merusi – Naturalist/Guide, Silversea Academy Lead Trainer
“I am thrilled with the success of Silversea’s Galapagos Cross-Training Academy, which was conducted with our expert guides,” says Kit van Wagner, Silversea’s Director of Expedition Training and Staff Development. “They are solid professionals and seriously skilled, both in the field and on board. The Academy’s Lead Trainers also came from within the Silversea Expeditions ranks and did a phenomenal job leading the team during their on board training. The Trainers focused on leadership development challenges and hands-on operational skill progressions. I have been super impressed with both trainers and trainees.”
Silversea’s first Expedition Training Academy was held in 2017-18 on Silver Cloud in Antarctica, while the second took place in 2018-19 in the Indian Ocean.
Both times, the Academy trained guides who were new to the expedition cruising industry to Silversea’s high standards. This latest Academy provided cross-training opportunities designed to share ideas and operations between ships and throughout the Silversea Expeditions fleet.
Five of the participating guides have now returned to the Galapagos archipelago to implement their acquired skills. From July 2020, they will welcome guests aboard Silversea’s new ship Silver Origin, which will be the cruise line’s first-ever destination specific ship and the most elegant vessel to ever sail in the Galapagos.
Built with the environment in mind and designed specifically to sail between these unique islands, Silver Origin will combine Silversea’s local destination expertise with the cruise line’s trademark level of luxury to offer guests the ultimate destination experience.