Thomas De Serio

Following the completion of his studies in 2020, Lincoln UTC graduate Thomas De Serio secured full sponsorship from P&O Ferries to complete a Higher National Diploma Training Programme in marine engineering, in association with the British Merchant Navy at the Humberside Maritime College.

The Merchant Navy offers a well-paid career. During his course Thomas will be paid a good salary – known as a training allowance. Once qualified as an Officer of the Watch he can expect to earn between £22,000-£30,000 per year as a starting wage, earning from £40,000 to £80,000 as his career develops.

“I’ve always been interested in engineering, and the UTC gave me the opportunity to focus on the subject in depth and with excellent facilities,” he says. “I knew that it would provide me with the best opportunity to succeed in the industry in future. My previous school didn’t offer engineering as a subject. During my time at the UTC I studied engineering manufacture and engineering design at GCSE, and an extended diploma in engineering in the sixth form. I gained lots of key skills and experience that helped me to secure the next step of my career.”

Thomas studied a core curriculum of specialist STEM GCSEs followed by a BTEC Level 3 Extended Diploma in engineering (equivalent to 3 A Levels). Thomas says: “Studying at the UTC for the past four years has allowed me to focus on the subject of engineering in depth. With excellent facilities, I had a wealth of experience to draw upon during the apprenticeship application process.”

“I feel so lucky to have secured sponsorship from P&O, as it means my tuition fees will be paid in full and I will also be able to earn whilst learning. I’m looking forward to an exciting career at sea! I’m currently in my first stage of my training, which is 26 weeks long. Following this, I embark on my first sea phase of training.”